Private: Community Blog - 2015


In mid-July, Casino joined hundreds of other cheering spectators at the 28th Annual Yukon Hand Games Tournament held near Teslin, Yukon on Teslin Tlingit Council traditional territory. Casino was honoured to be invited to the competition and support the participation of Selkirk First Nation stick gambling teams from Pelly Crossing.

Hosted by a different Yukon First Nation every year, the tournament is a ceremonial, family event, attracting teams of both experienced and novice players and a network of enthusiastic family and friends.

Stick gambling is an important traditional game that was originally played when First Nation traders met up on trails, lasting for days. Two teams compete, where each player from one team hides a token in a hand and the ‘shooter’ from the opposite team tries to guess the correct hands holding the tokens. Scoring is based on the number of gambling sticks captured based on correct guesses. This is repeated from team to team until the winning team captures all of the sticks. The game is further animated with good luck chanting and drumming.

A total of 30 adult and 12 youth teams competed in this double-elimination tournament over 2 full days, with each team comprising 6 players and each game lasting from a few minutes to over an hour. Pelly Crossing did well, with the Hu Cha Hu Dun adult team placing 4th and Selkirk Thunder youth placing 3rd.

For more photos and videos on this event visit

Watch video of two teams stick gambling at the 28th Annual Hand Games Tournament in Teslin, Yukon.
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In May in Whitehorse, Casino representatives and many other local supporters were All Aboard! the Whitehorse Trolley on a Journey of the Imagination, a fundraising event for the Yukon Imagination Library family literacy program.

For almost a decade, the Yukon Imagination Library, in partnership with the Rendezvous Rotary Club of Whitehorse, Yukon Literacy Coalition, and many other partners, has provided Yukon children with one free book every month from their birth to the age of five.

Casino will continue to support the Yukon Imagination Library and family literacy across the territory and encourages families to join the more than 2,000 children enrolled in the program.

For more information about the program and how to enroll a little one in your life, visit



Yukon Imagination Library Volunteer Advisory Committee (AC) and supporters (L-R): Front – Yukon Minister of Energy, Mines & Resources and Highways & Public Works Hon. Scott Kent; Claire Derome (AC); Dr. Karen Barnes (AC); Wendy Tayler (AC); Jenny Whitehouse. Back – Con Lattin; Dean Knoblauch; Stanley Noel; Yukon Minister of Education Hon. Doug Graham; Cory Bellemore (AC); Mike Barwe. Missing AC members: Sue Craig, , Kells Boland; Karen Fortin; James Miller.



In April 2015, the Pelly Crossing ‘Girls’ Night Out Club’ was in full swing as the Eliza Van Bibber School kitchen was abuzz with girl talk and hair spray.

Casino was pleased to be invited by the school and support this girls’ group by bringing special guest Ammanda Partridge, owner of Elements Esthetics Studio in Whitehorse, and her crew to demonstrate to a group of female students how to apply makeup, give great manicures, and create easy hairdos.

Created and delivered twice a month by the school over the past two years, each session begins with a home cooked meal, followed by an arts workshop.  The program aims to provide girls with an opportunity to develop positive relationships with each other as well as school staff and community members – relationships that form a support network for the girls as they move through school. The Club has been well attended by students and well supported by the school and community.

Having brought a similar esthetics workshop to the Carmacks Girls’ Club a month earlier, Casino was honoured to have had the opportunity to contribute to such beneficial groups in both communities. We look forward to more opportunities to work together in the future.

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In February 2015, West African mud mixed with Carmacks snow was the subject of the Carmacks ‘Girls Night Out Club.’ Casino brought local musician and artist ‘Ssasi’ Mahamadou Sangaré to demonstrate to a group of girls, the art of Bogolan ‘mud cloth’ printmaking. It was a truly multicultural experience for all.

The Casino team has joined the Little Salmon/Carmacks First Nation and Tantalus School in delivering the ‘Girls Night Out Club’ in Carmacks for the purpose of providing Grades 6 to 12 girls, a place to socialize after school, in a fun and instructional atmosphere.

The club’s inaugural session a few months ago was marked by local artist and photographer Leslie Leong. Casino looks forward to continue supporting the Carmacks ‘Girls Night Out Club’ and helping to inspire and motivate youth in making healthy choices.

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Alma Wrixon, the school’s Community Education Liaison Coordinator, helps Ssasi setup the tables for the girls. Healthy snacks keep the girls refreshed throughout the 2-hour session.
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