A couple of cousins from Muskeg Lake Cree Nation are headed to Portland to be extras on their favourite sketch-comedy television show.
When living in Saskatoon, Leah Arcand and her cousin, Joi, began watching the West Coast based satire after coming back from a stint living in British Columbia.

"We just started watching it and loved it right off the bat," said Arcand.

The show, Portlandia, is a comedy series that stars Fred Armisen and Carrie Brownstein. Characters from the series have even inspired the duo's past two Halloween costume ideas.


The cousins side-by-side from characters from the show. (Leah Arcand)

The adventure begins

It all started last year when the duo applied to be extras on the sketch-comedy series before a summer vacation.

It wasn't until last week that they got a reply.

"I was on the road with another cousin [when I received an email] asking if I was available for this weekend for a shoot to be an extra," said Arcand. "I was like, 'Oh my God! This is so awesome!'"

This was when she found out that Joi didn't receive the same message.

"I messaged this coordinator back to tell him that I'm in, but I'm kind of a package deal with my cousin," she added.


The cousins side-by-side with scenes from the show portraying their favourite feminist characters. (Leah Arcand)

Good news came on Tuesday when a confirmation e-mail was sent to the two women. They were alerted to be on set this week for a shoot that was scheduled for Saturday.

They immediately packed their bags and are now making their way across the border. The only thing setting them back are the funds needed to get there and back.

A GoFundMe campaign called "Aunties Do Portandia" has been set up to help with travel expenses.  

This will be the first time they've both set foot in the city that hosts their favourite show.

"Ever since we started watching it, we felt like we needed to go to Portland, [and] we need to visit all these places," said Arcand. "Now that this is happening, it's pretty surreal."