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Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe students to perform at US Capitol tree lighting

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More than 100 American Indians from the Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe will share their culture and traditions during the Capitol Christmas Tree lighting Tuesday.

During Tuesday's annual Capitol Christmas Tree celebration (which is hosted by Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar) the Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe will perform a traditional drumming ceremony, the Capitol Christmas Tree Facebook page says. Four-time state champion fiddler Mary LaPlant will also perform.

The students will also perform at various tree lighting celebrations around Washington, D.C., according to the Capitol Christmas Tree website. They will be honored at the Museum of the Native American Indian, the Facebook page notes.

This year's tree was cut from the Chippewa National Forest, located on the Leech Lake Reservation.

KSTP says the 180 students from the tribe left for Washington, D.C. Sunday. The tribe was involved with a similar trip in 1992, the station notes.

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The Capitol Christmas Tree was decorated Sunday with some of the 10,000 ornaments created by Minnesota students. The other ornaments will decorate the 70 companion trees throughout the U.S. Capitol building that were provided by the Minnesota Tree Growers Association, according to the Leech Lake Reservation website.

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