Alaska Native village lifts ban on traditional dance

The Alaska Native village of Noorvik has lifted a longtime ban on ceremonial dancing.

The ban was put in place when the Inupiat village was established in 1914. Quaker missionaries viewed dancing as evil.

But residents revived the tradition after reaching out to sister villages. The ban was lifted last fall with the support of the Noorvik Friends Church.

"I don't speak for the church, but in my own view we're going to come to a place in the afterlife where we sing and dance to the Lord," pastor Aurora Sampson told the Associated Press. "While we are on this earth we might as well practice."

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Alaska village embraces Native dances banned by church (AP 2/22)

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