Northern Arapaho Newsletter Issue 002

Welcome to the Northern Arapaho Newsletter

The Northern Arapaho Newsletter will be published bi-weekly, but we don't plan to stop there. Once this thing gains some steam, it will grow into a full in-house news media outlet. We plan on having an entire staff of writers, journalists, interviewers, and photographers, etc.

We want to connect people with the resources they need. In our tribe, we have a ton of outstanding programs. In each issue, we will highlight one tribal program. We'll share info on the services they offer and contact information.

Our Arapaho Language has been with us since time immemorial. With it, we uniquely see the world. It's one of the most beautiful languages out there. For each issue, we will highlight an Arapaho word/phrase. We encourage you to start using them with your family and friends!


Tribes Let Oil And Gas Lease Expire, Seek To Build Own Company

In December 2019, the Northern Arapaho and Eastern Shoshone Tribe's (The Tribes) oil and gas lease with Merit Energy Operations I, LLC. (Merit), expired. After nearly two years of negotiations, The Tribes agreed on a resolution (the resolution) that stated they would not renew their lease with Merit or any other company to develop oil and gas resources at Circle Ridge Field.

The Tribes entered into the original oil and gas production lease for 20 years with Marathon Oil Company effective as of January 1, 2000. In 2016, Merit acquired all of Marathon Oil Company's producing oil properties on the Wind River Reservation, including the Circle Ridge Field.

Merit's lease allowed them to extract oil from the Circle Ridge Oil Field located in Fremont County, Wyoming. Under this lease, Merit had the sole right to produce and develop oil and gas in the Circle Ridge Field.

In January 2018, The Tribes and Merit began negotiating a possible extension of the Circle Ridge lease. The Tribes conducted an assessment with advice from the Department of Interior's Division of Energy and Mineral Development (DEMD) and The Tribe's trustees. The Tribes determined that it would be far more beneficial for The Tribes to let the Merit lease expire and instead self-manage the oil and gas production at the Circle Ridge Field.

There are many advantages for The Tribes in maintaining control of their own oil and gas production. For example, Merit and any other non-tribal entity would have their production taxed by both the State of Wyoming and the federal government. However, The Tribes processing their own oil and gas resources would not be subject to these State and federal taxes. This alone would be savings in the millions of dollars on an annual basis. In turn, The Tribes can further invest in their production and enhance the capability to extract additional oil and gas resources in a virtuous cycle leading to greater resources for The Tribes and their people.

In October of 2019, The Tribes informed Merit of their intention not to renew the lease. In response, Merit sued The Tribes before a three-person arbitration panel as called for by the lease. In a year-long process, after extensive discovery, pre-trial briefing, and a four-day trial, the Arbitration Panel ruled in The Tribe's favor in all critical respects. The ruling held that The Tribes acted in good faith in their decision not to renew the lease and that the lease did indeed expire in the close of 2019. The ruling also said Merit has the first right of refusal to any contract The Tribes are willing to accept from a third party.

The Tribes, in conformity with the Arbitration Panel's decision, have now issued a request for proposals (RFP). The Tribes, in doing so, have made clear that they will not entertain a lease arrangement but are prepared to consider contract operators to aid their own resource development. That RFP further made clear that any successful RFP would have to include a robust plan to train The Tribe's own members and personnel so as to facilitate the ability to take over operations in the future. Consistent with the Arbitration decision, once the Tribes select a contract operation arrangement they are willing to accept, The Tribes will present the terms to Merit. Merit can either accept or decline the proposal. Regardless of Merit's decision to operate the field, The Tribes will retain ownership and operational control.

The Division of Energy and Mineral Development is currently advising The Tribes on a transition plan for the Circle Ridge Field.

Oil Field at Arapaho Ranch Early 1900s

Arapaho Phrase

Eat (Telling someone to eat)— Bii3ihi (bee-thee-hee')

Click link below to hear a fluent elder pronounce this week's phrase

The audio is from the Arapaho Language App, which is made possible by our fluent elder speakers and Arapaho School district #38

A Message From Wind River Family and Community Health Care

The Importance of Your Child's Well Being

Childhood is a time of rapid growth and change. In our current environment, children develop faster, which is why a well-child visit is essential.

Each visit includes a complete physical exam. The health care provider will record your child's height, weight, and other important information specific to your little one. Hearing, vision, immunizations, and other essential screening tests are part of this visit. Well-child checkups are helpful to maintain your little one's overall health.

Wind River Family and Community Healthcare's pediatric team is compassionate, dedicated, and committed to your child's well-being. Our Pediatric Team consists of Dr. Joann Kaplan, Pediatrician at our Arapahoe Clinic, Dr. Carlos Hernandez, Pediatrician at our Riverton Clinic, and Teri Tesdall-Sartori, Pediatric Nurse Practitioner at Arapahoe Clinic.

Even if your child is healthy, well-child visits are an excellent time to focus on your child's wellness. It's an opportunity to improve care and implement preventative maintenance, keeping your child healthy.

Your child will need wellness checkups at the following ages

Two weeks,

Two months

Four months

Six months

Nine months

12 months

15 months

18 months

Two years

2 1/2 years

Three years

Four years

Five years

Call to schedule your child's well-child appointment today. 307.856.9281.

Foundation For Nations Ministries will have food pantries every Tuesday 11am-1pm / Every Thursday 4pm-6pm

On January 19th 2021, they will have a food drive starting at 4pm

All food pantries and food drives will be hosted at 620 East Monroe Ave Riverton, Wy 82501

On January 6th 2021, they will restart their weekly youth groups at the above address.

Youth group will be every Wednesday 6pm-8pm. Dinner will be served

Virtual Giving Tree 2020

In the weeks leading up to Christmas 2020, Danielle Fasthorse, Tovah Harjo, Stephanie C'Hair, Hellen Returnstowar, and Andrea Felter started a virtual giving tree via Facebook. Their goal was to help the children of the Wind River Reservation. They understood the devastation caused by the 2020 pandemic.

Parents and guardians sent their children's Christmas wish list to the Facebook page, where sponsors "adopted" a child and made their wishlist come true.

Tovah Harjo said this was their first year doing this event and they had to learn on the go. She said the team's commitment made it easier to workout the kinks.

"It was amazing that we were able to come together and help each other out. The parents' reaction was awesome, and it was great seeing the kid's faces light up. There were a lot of tears of joy. I'm happy we could assist in giving our communities/families a Christmas, whether it was big or small. Thank you to everyone in our community that got involved, and thank you to our sponsors," Harjo said.

With the Fort Washakie Fire Department's help, the group delivered presents to 89 families for a total of 338 kids. The giving tree included sponsors from Fremont County, Jackson Hole, Utah, Montana, California, and Washington. The Northern Arapaho Business Council sponsored the last of the children that didn't initially receive a sponsor.

Fort Washakie Fire Department and Sponsors from Jackson

Historical Fact: Before the Arapaho Tribe acquired horses, they used pack dogs as their primary mode of transportation. The domesticated dogs pulled travois loaded with supplies.

Pack Dog With Travois
Pack Dog With Travois

Northern Arapaho Program Highlight

477 Biixoo3etiit Program is located at 230 West Main Riverton, Wy 82501

Services: cash assistance with children, cash assistance without children, employment in training, childcare, summer youth work employment, assistance in purchasing groceries, JOM program (assistance for students).

The 477 program works on an application/approval process. Their mission is to nurture and strengthen families and assist them in becoming self-sufficient.

Directors: Rachel Grant and Dr. Vonda Wells

Hours: Monday-Friday 10am-2pm

Contact: 307-857-2436

Arapaho Ranch Restoration Project

The Arapaho Tribe purchased The Padlock Ranch in 1940. Under the new ownership, The Tribe changed the name to The Arapaho Ranch. Since its purchase, the Arapaho Tribe has nearly doubled the size of the old Padlock ranch; it is currently one of Wyoming's largest ranches at 450,000 acres.

The Arapaho Ranch Field Station Project, a nonprofit under the Ranch Board and NABC, is currently working to restore its infrastructure. The restorations include electrical, plumbing/septic, stabilization of some structures, repurposing and renovation of others, potable water, a campground, horse rides, etc.

The ARFSP functions and raises funds separately from the ranch operations, receiving funding from the CARES Act, the Wyoming Cultural Trust Fund, the Native American Agriculture Fund, and the National Endowment for the Arts Grant. The goal is to complete the project, within four years, without any burden on the Tribe.

The National Endowment for the Arts Grant went towards furniture restoration in the Arapaho Historic Mansion. Structural, mechanical, and surface finish are yet to be completed.

Front View of the Arapaho Historic Mansion

When fully developed, The Arapaho Ranch Field Station will be a destination for hands-on agritourism, place-based education, and an elegant community center.

Restored Furniture in the Ranch (upholstery was done in Denver with new fabrics based on Pendleton blanket designs)

The C-store, located on the premises, will house an information center, Arapaho art store, exhibit area, and disseminate information for interpretive tours of the site.

The ARFSP board includes Sandy Friday (Chair), Nolan Friday, Marvene Thunder, and Lorre Hoffman.

Contact the project development manager, Lorre Hoffman, for more info:



Click the link below to learn about summer programs offered at the Arapaho Historic Mansion as development progresses.

Stabilization of the Ranch Schoolhouse
Stabilization of the Ranch Schoolhouse
Ranch Granary
Inside Ranch Barn (100 Feet Long)
Outside of Ranch Barn (Needs 400 Gallons of Paint to Restore)
The Ranch Blacksmith and Carpenter Shop
Ranch C-Store

Contact Us

CooXooEii Black



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