Update: Mni ki Wakan: The Decade of Water Summit Planned for August

Efforts are moving forward for the indigenous-led “Mni ki Wakan: The Decade of Water Summit” in Minneapolis later this year, and you can help.

Seven members of the LaPointe tiwahe (family) will be traveling to the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues meeting March 24 – April 5 to let people know about the Summit, network, and invite participation. The LaPointe family is hosting an informal gathering and fundraiser to help support its trip to the United Nations. The event is:

Saturday, March 11, 6:00 -8:30 p.m. at All My Relations Gallery, 1414 East Franklin Ave. Those attending will include Oceti Sakowin (Seven Council Fires) traditional knowledge keepers, indigenous human rights observers, relatives from Standing Rock, filmmaker Sheldon Wolfchild (Lower Sioux) and rapper Tall Paul. The event will include indigenous food and music, and be youth and community oriented.

Please come, learn and support this important work. Continue reading

Join the Mde Maka Ska Four Directions Water Walk Friday, May 27

Four Directions Water WalkYou probably have heard about efforts to restore the original Dakota name “Mde Maka Ska” or White Earth Lake to what settlers renamed Lake Calhoun. Less well known is the work going on behind the scenes to not only to change the lake’s name but to change its culture.

Facilitated by LeMoine LaPointe (Lakota), a group of Native American and non-Native residents have been holding community conversations about how to reimagine the lake, tell its historic stories, and bring out the best in people. (First Universalist Church, 3400 Dupont Ave. S., has hosted these conversations.)

The group’s first major initiative is the Four Directions Water Walk, a walk for the health, vitality, and spirit of Mni Wakan (Sacred Water). The walk will be in honor of, and a prayer for, the sustainability and increasing recovery of clean, fresh water.

The walk will start at Thomas Beach, 3700 Thomas Ave. S., at 7:30 a.m. on Friday, May 27. Please join the walk, bring friends, and spread the word! Here is a Four Directions Water Walk flyer to help promote the event.

Participants will walk clockwise around the lake, arriving back at Thomas Beach in time for the opening ceremony of the eighth annual Mde Maka Ska Canoe Nations Gathering. According to organizers:

Your participation will emit a resounding message to the world regarding our resurgent relationship with the sacredness of water now and for generations to come.