Bilingual signs are showing up in Bemidji shops, so you can order soup in Ojibway or go wash up in the “Ininiwag” room.
Bemidji’s Cabin Coffee House & Café is the first business to put up the English/Ojibway signs, but more places plan to start soon, reports Molly Miron in the Bemidji Pioneer.
Noemi Aylesworth, Cabin Coffee House owner, said the idea came from Shared Vision, a Bemidji group working to improve relations between American Indians and others in town.
Shared Vision members Michael Meuers and Rachelle Houle had set a goal of getting 20 businesses to put up the bilingual signs within a year. But already nine more are on board, and they might have 20 by the end of the month.
Sandy Jo Pilgrim, owner of SJ & Company Hair Design & Day Spa, The T-Shirt Shop and My Best Friend’s Closet, said she’ll have signs soon.
“I’ve been talking to some of my clients from the reservation, because I didn’t want to do anything offensive, and they love it,” Pilgrim said.