LCO Tribe Finds ‘Brand New Way’ To Protest: With A Harvest Camp

 

This article is being republished here. I am a graduate of LCO tribal college (LCOOCC). I have a great love for my Ojiwe friends and their struggle to keep traditional ways alive. The Harvest Camp is the best of this world where elders and youth can share and learn how to live traditionally.
I pray that Bad River and LCO can stave off the Iron Ore Mine which threatens fresh water feeding directly into 43 pure waterways that wander through Bad River Reservation, through other communityies out to Lake Sperior and are meant for all species. You can learn more about the Penokee Hill Iron Ore Mine in the news and on Facebook.
In 2012, I arranged for Frank Koehn to come to Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwe Community College and present a program on the Iron Ore Mines proposed for Penokee Hills. He has reached far and wide and is interviewed in the following article at http://www.uwsp.edu/pointeronline/Pages/articles/Penokee-Hills-Mine-Could-Devastate.aspx

 

Harvest Camp

Credit Jennifer Simonson
Twelve-year-old Conner Beaulieu picks wild onions at the Lac Courte Oreilles Harvest Camp in Iron County.

 

The Lac Courte Oreilles tribe is trying a unique way to help stop the proposed iron ore mine in the Penokees: gathering wild onions and mushrooms.

The new LCO Harvest Camp is set in the backwoods of Iron County, right in the middle of the proposed mine.

Connor Beaulieu of LCO says he’s almost 13 years old and proud to show off this new camp.

“Right here, we’re just building a little wigwam right there and right here is where one of our campers are staying. A little farther back is where we’re building more campsites. Pretty nice here. Peaceful. I don’t know where this leads, but let’s explore!”

The five-acre camp is tucked away in an Iron County forest. There’s no cell phone service here, but there are campsites, trails, wigwams, a community kitchen and lots of young people. Twelve-year-old Mikey DeMain of LCO likes working at the camp.

 

Harvest Camp

Credit Jennifer Simonson
One of several wigwams being built at the LCO Harvest Camp. The camp is a unique form of protesting the proposed iron ore mine in the Penokee range.

​“Yeah. I helped ‘em make some wigwams, helped collect firewood and stack it. Think I’m going to hang out there a lot this summer.”

Mikey’s grandfather Paul DeMain says this is also an educational camp.

“You can learn about mushroom gathering, plant medicines, wigwam building. There’s ironwood up there. There’s basket weaving with birch bark. There’s people fishing. There are people doing all kinds of beautiful things and it is so healing. That’s ultimately what it was: The idea of, ‘How can we help mend our communities and come together?’”

This camp is on top of the largest iron ore body in North America with the potential to create hundreds of jobs. But Wisconsin tribes say it would destroy this pristine land.

“Some of us have given our whole lives to fight for the cause and stop mining.”

So this spring, the Lac Courte Oreilles Band of Lake Superior Ojibwe Governing Council voted to designate this spot as a harvest camp. They have that right under the Treaty of 1842 — to hunt, fish and gather. The treaty ceded the land to the U.S. Government in exchange for that right.

LCO Elder Melvin Gasper says Native American harvest camps date back centuries, when tribes lived off the land.

“You start out with a spring camp or maple sugar camp. You will travel next to your fishing camp. Then you travel next to your harvest camp, for harvesting wild game and stuff for your winter. And then you have your winter camp. All of these were different harvest camps.“

And Gasper says there’s another reason. It’s to stop the mine.

DeMain says the mine would poison the Lake Superior and Bad River reservation watershed, so it’s time other tribes join the fight.

“If there are people from some indigenous nation who has relationships to the land up here who want to go camping up at Mount Whittlesey at Eagle’s Peak or on the crest and occupy the range, that’s up to them. What we’ve tried to do is establish a legal framework in which we can exist here and coincide with what’s there now and monitor the situation.”

DeMain says LCO is deliberately getting in the way of Gogebic Taconite, which is currently drilling exploratory bore holes.

“Bad River seems to be taking the brunt of the battle on this mining legislation and organizing it. Frankly, people get tired and they feel beaten up, so there are other tribes who are saying ‘How can they contribute to this way?’“

So, they’ve built this harvest camp. Elder Gasper says even as they pull wild onions from the ground, they are effectively occupying this area.

“Most definitely it is. They were asking us basically ‘How do you protest?’ This is a brand new way. It’s a peaceful manner in which we are using as a harvest area and showing what can be taken out of this and saved. Some of us have given our whole lives to fight for the cause and stop mining.”

Gasper says his ancestors sacrificed for him, now he’s doing the same for Mikey and Connor and future generations.

 

Butterfly Corner with Happy Tonics

Butterfly Corner
by Mary Ellen Ryall

April 20 – In honor of Earth Day, Jim VanMoorleham and I planted five native chokeberry (Aronia melanocarpa) shrubs in area three, near the Memory Tree Grove, at the Monarch Butterfly Habitat. Black chokeberry is a deciduous, cold hardy shrub useful in landscape plantings, showing white flowers in the spring, colorful red foliage, and heavy dark fruit in the fall.

Meadow fritillary copyright Mike Reese, Wisconsin Butterflies Organization

Meadow fritillary copyright Mike Reese, Wisconsin Butterflies Organization

April 24 – Today I saw a white cabbage and a fritillary butterfly. The fritillary’s host plant is violet; flowers are in bloom. Butterfly sightings were posted to Wisconsin Butterfly Organization at http://wisconsinbutterflies.org/Individuals may record their butterfly sightings at this site. Kids would enjoy this activity as much as adults do. The project allows us to understand butterfly population trends.

My Name is Butterfly copyright Mary Ellen Ryall

I am happy to report that my book, “My Name is Butterfly,” is now available at Gadsden Public Library in Gadsden, AL. I am thrilled that libraries around the country are purchasing the book for children. Book postcards also went to the State Library Convention in AL where it was given exposure to other librarians.

According to ABC News, “A female Baringo giraffe calf at the Bronx Zoo was enjoying the warm New York weather over the weekend while frolicking with a butterfly that flew through her exhibit. The butterfly caught the newborn baby’s eye while she was nuzzling her mom and exploring her new home. The calf was born in March but has not yet been named, according to the Bronx Zoo. All of the zoo’s giraffes are named in memory of James and Margaret Carter, benefactors for the Carter Giraffe Building.” You can view the chase at http://abcnews.go.com/GMA/video/baby-giraffe-chases-butterfly-bronx-zoo-16151869

Award winning squash bread copyright Mary Ellen Ryall

Award winning squash bread copyright Mary Ellen Ryall

April 25 – My recipe for Squash Bread was a winner at the Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwa Community College Sustainability Living Fair. The bread was chosen for Jiibaakweyang, We are Cooking Together, Flavors of Lac Courte Oreilles. I was delighted to share saved squash seed with attendees. The acorn squash grew in the Three Sisters Garden at the Monarch Butterfly Habitat in 2011. Seed sharing is all about stories of where seed comes from. At the fair, Sheldon Spratford gave me beautiful corn husks. He reported that his grandmother grew the corn until the 1980s, when she passed away. He found one husk of dried corn at her house afterwards and saved it. Sheldon, an elder, mentioned that he has been growing the sweet corn since the 1990s. He mentioned that the corn is sweet and small. Happy Tonics will offer the seed at several environmental events in May. The Visitors Center/Store will be open for the season on Memorial Weekend. We invite you to stop by for sweet corn seed.

April 26 – Journey North reported that the monarch migration moved into five new U.S. states—Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, Iowa, and Minnesota this past week. The cold snap is keeping monarchs away from Shell Lake; there is no milkweed up yet in the habitat. Let us hope that a warming spell will begin soon.

Carol Hubin reported on April 28 that milkweed is up on her property in Shell Lake. Keep your eyes posted. If you spot a monarch, please let us know if it is a faded butterfly or freshly born. Knowing the difference will allow Happy Tonics to record the following: Did the butterfly fly all the way from Mexico or is this the first generation of butterfly in the U. S.? Female butterflies will need milkweed to lay their eggs on. Female butterflies only live a few weeks after depositing eggs.

In 2012, we are going to count monarch eggs at the Monarch Butterfly Habitat and mark milkweed plants that have eggs. Wire cages with tags will be used to identify which milkweed plants have eggs. If you have any old tomato cages to donate or see a monarch sighting, please call Mary Ellen at (715) 466-5349.

Ginger Wilcox smudges Mike Carpenter

Ginger Wilcox smudges Mike Carpenter

April 28 – 5th Annual Earth Day Event in Shell Lake was well attended. We are grateful to Dr. John Anderson and Ginger Wilcox for leading us in a Native American Ceremony to honor donors. Butterfly friends came to celebrate the butterfly and conservation efforts on behalf of the butterfly. Happy Tonics hosted an informal potluck afterwards at the Visitors Center/Store at 25 Fifth Avenue, Shell Lake.

Frac Sand Mining in Wisconsin Towns – Conference

Frac Sand Mining in Wisconsin Towns –
A One Day Conference

Thursday, December 1st

8am-3:30pm
29 Pines Sleep Inn & Suites Conference Center
5872 33rd Ave. * Eau Claire (near HWY 29 and Co Rd T)

WHO SHOULD COME:

  • Wisconsin Town officials, county and state elected officials
  • Farmers, townspeople, representatives of local organizations

CONFERENCE GOALS:

  • Provide an overview of the industry and how it is developing in Wisconsin
  • Provide training on practical tools that can be successfully used to address local needs
  • Encourage networking and connections among local officials and citizens who are addressing similar issues

TOPICS:

  • Overview of the Frac Sand Industry
  • How Frac Sand Mining Development is unfolding in Wisconsin
  • What the Industry is Looking For
  • Implications and Issues for Towns
  • Regulatory Structure in Wisconsin and Legal Strategies for Towns
  • Practical Tools for Towns

IN DEPTH WORKSHOPS ON:

  • Roads, property values and taxes
  • Regulatory and non regulatory tools for Towns, including
    • Zoning and Non-Metallic Mining Ordinances
    • Moratoriums
    • Developers Agreements

PARTICIPANTS WILL:

  • Get answers to your questions, issues and concerns
  • Hear from leading experts, including experienced attorneys, geologists, road specialists, town leaders, and others
  • Hear and share stories about Towns’ direct experience with frac sand mining and processing plants
  • Explore which tools are right for your Town
  • Take home a “Toolbox” of concrete tools, models, examples and resources
Conference Registration
is $25 and includes continental breakfast, lunch and materials. Please visit the WFU website to download a registration form. This event is co-sponsored by Wisconsin Farmers Union and WI Towns Association. Call the WFU office if you have questions – 715-723-5561.
Perhaps some of insectamonarca’s friends  reading this Blog will have  transportation access to attend the conference. I want to go but there is no public transportation on that day. I live 2 hours north of Eau Claire.
On Dec. 6 we are showing GASLAND at Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwe Community College in Hayward, WI. Speakers Patricia Popple and Frank Koehn will educate the audience about this mining procedure which may have environmental risks associated with the mining.

LCO ENVIRONMENTAL FILM FESTIVAL SERIES

by Amber Marlow

Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwa Community College
James “Pipe” Mustache Auditorium
Wednesday, February 23, 2011

FREE EVENT PUBLIC WELCOME!

12 pm Potluck
(please bring a dish to pass and your own plate/utensils)

12:15 pm Guest Speaker: Alison Kilday
Mobility Manager, Namekagon Transit
12:3o pm – Film: “Fuel”
2.15 pm Advocacy to Action! How do we make a difference in our community?

FUEL is an entertaining and comprehensive look at energy in America: a history of where we have been, our present predicament and a solution to our dependence on foreign oil. Josh Tickell’s stirring, radical and multi-award winning FUEL may be known by some as the ‘little energy documentary,’ but in truth, it’s a powerful portrait of America’s overwhelming addiction to, and reliance on, oil. Rousing and reactionary, this film will leave you feeling hopeful and inspired.” (111 minutes)

Sponsored by Happy Tonics, Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwa Community College, Web of Learning Sustainable Living Institute and the Institute of Museum and Library Services.

Looking at Cuba’s Organic Food Movement and More

LCO Green Team Sign Honor the Earth

LCO Green Team Sign Honor the Earth

November 3, 2010, The GreenTeam at Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwa Community College, in Hayward, WI, hosted the first in the series of the II Annual Environmental Film Fest. There was a good turnout of instructors in science, natural resources and ethnobotany. The event was hosted by Happy Tonics, Inc, LCOOCC and the Sustainable Living Institute.

 A film “Power of Community” showed how Cuba responded after the collapse of Russia in Cuba.  The country had to face a loss of utilities and industry. Transportation came to a grinding halt. The people went from cars to bicycles, from inported food to growing their own as they suffered a loss of income and petroleum for energy. None the less, the people have something to teach the world. They brought back healthy small agriculture that is no longer dependent upon large agricultureal machines and pesticides and herbicides.

Healthy food is now abundant in Cuba and the soil has been improved by sustainable some agricultural and family garden practices. We can learn something from Cuba. The USA and the rest of the world are now experiencing rising food prices as the global food supply is becoming more expensive and fuel prices keep surging. In Wisconsin many communities are starting to raise their own food. Families are maintaining garden plants. Our small farmers are being respected for the job that they do to bring local food to our tables. I see this movement growing in northwest Wisconsin and I feel proud to live in a community that understands that our security comes from knowing who is growing our food and where we can buy local grown produce that is free of chemicals.   

Teresa Depies, owner Springbrook Organic Dairy

Teresa Depies, owner Springbrook Organic Dairy

Teresa Depies, owner of Springbrook Organic Dairy, was the speaker at the November 3rd event. She raised some interesting points. There are new pasture rules in relationship to how many cows can be in the pasture. It is based on waste management. Teresa raises Jersey cows. They are a smaller breed and have less of a waste management problem than other species of dairy cows. This is a Grade A farm.  Teresa and her husband have been in the business since 1990. She is having success in distributing her milk to local grocery stores. I am proud that Dahlstrom’s Grocery Store in Shell Lake sells Springbrook organic milk.

When we buy from our local farmers we are supporting our own crops, dairy, poultry and grass-fed animals. This allows us to be prepared if we where to find ourselves in a “Food Security Situation.” Preparedness is readiness. The Green Team is busy at work networking a local food system into a viable way to purchase food.

Sierra White, intern from Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwe Community College

Sierra White, intern from Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwe Community College

 

Welcome Sierra White, a LCOOCC student and environmental education intern of Happy Tonics, Inc. Sierra will be Happy Tonics representative at the monthly Environmental Film Fest. She will assist with marketing, advertising, and recruiting partners for a local food network. Sierra will also assist with a “Day Trip”  itinery and partners with Happy Tonics Monarch Butterfly Habitat.

Environmental Film Fest at Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwa Community College

Join Happy Tonics, Inc., Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwa Community College and the Sustainable Living Institute for the first Annual Event (Nov. 2010 – May 2011). The program takes place on November 3, 2010.  Hope you can join us from 12 noon – 2 p.m. Pot luck, film: Power of Community and Guest speaker.

Address: 13466 Trepania Road, Hayward, WI 54871.

Click on link to view flyer of event:  LCO_EFF_November3

Happy Tonics September News

Ryall, M. E. (2010, October 6). Happy Tonics September News. Washburn County Register, p. 10

Alex paying attention to learning to identify leaves

Alex paying attention to learning to identify leaves

 There was a Fall Youth Plant Science event at the Spooner Ag Research Station on Saturday October 2, 2010. Area 4-H youth and other youth were invited to attend the event. Happy Tonics is proud to announce that the Pines and Lake Girl Scout Troop of Shell Lake attended. The Girl Scout Troop had a container garden at Friendship Commons this past summer. Offering youth gardening opportunities is one way to jumpstart their interest in gardening. 

Emily experiences pure joy as she catches a falling leaf

Emily experiences pure joy as she catches a falling leaf

Kevin Schoessow, UW-Extension Spooner Area Agriculture Agent and UW-Extension Master Gardener Volunteers lead discussions and demonstrations on making compost, planting garlic, pruning grapes and raspberries and putting the garden to bed. There was a tour of the Spooner Ag Research Station Display gardens were youth learned about the “off the grid” drip irrigation system, powered by an airlift tech pump and windmill and the newly constructed hoop house for season extension. The girls learned something about seed saving and enjoyed tasting fresh fruit, vegetables and berries right from the garden.

Kevin showing a button bottom and a peanut shaped squash

Kevin showing a button bottom and a peanut shaped squash

Happy Tonics exhibited at the Lac Courte Oreilles Convention Center as part of the Wellness Fair and Farmers Market on September 30, 2010. The nonprofit organization is a member of the Green Team at the LCO Tribal College which sponsored the event.  A pumpkin and squash display was on Exhibit. The plants are native to the Americas. A Three Sisters Garden (Corn, beans and squash) was grown in the habitat to teach visitors how heirloom organic crops may have been grown by Native Americans in the prairie of long ago. WOJB did a live interview of the Three Sisters Garden with Mary Ellen Ryall.   Happy Tonics volunteer staff shucked Hidatsa beans and packaged organic herb tea and organic culinary herbs for their online Store at http://stores.ebay.com/HAPPY-TONICS

Happy Tonics received a Matching Gift from Hachette Book Group from Park Avenue, New York, as a match to the donation made by Erica Hohos of Worcester, Massachusetts. The donation will allow us to implement memory pavers around the large wild black cherry tree in the Memory Tree Grove. We will honor Happy Tonics members who have passed on with pavers. The nonprofit organization will invite the public to participate in this upcoming fundraiser. Citizens will be able to purchase an engraved paver in memory of their loved ones including family, friends and pets.

ENVIRONMENTAL FILM FEST, Hayward, Wisconsin at LCO Convention Center

 
 

Cheekwood Monarch

Monarchs copyright Cindy Dyer, Dyer Design

 

LCO Convention Center, Hayward, Wisconsin
Thursday, May 6th, 2010
Environmental Film Fest

 

Schedule

11:30-12:00pm: Free Luncheon
12:00pm Speaker:  Mary Ellen Ryall, Happy Tonics Inc. on Plight of the Monarch Butterfly and reasons why Happy Tonics creates native habitats for pollinators and migrating butterflies.
12:20pm Film: “Incredible Journey of the Butterflies”
1:20pm Community Discussion – Advocacy to Action

Visit Informational Booths Before and After Film:

How to Build Butterfly & Rain Gardens, Local Foods, Recycling, and more!

This nature documentary from NOVA follows the epic migration of the monarch butterfly over 2000 miles, providing a butterfly’s-eye-view as the two month journey passes over forests, swamps, desserts, and open water, eventually touching down at their destination in Mexico.

Source: http://www.fandango.com/nova:theincrediblejourneyofthebutterflies_v480610/summary

email: maryellen@happytonics.org for more information.

 

  Background photo courtesy of: http://farm1.static.flickr.com/27/52666376_2d5156903c.jpg

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