Babaamaajimowinan (Telling of news in different places)

11th Annual Indigenous Farming Conference at Shooting Star Casino March 13-16, 2014

The Great Lakes Indigenous Farming Conference returns for its 11th year! It is happening right here in Mahnomen, Minnesota hosted by the White Earth Land Recovery Project. Come join us and learn about a wide array of topics such as; indigenous seed storage, constructing high tunnels, plant breeding, the origin of corn, pesticide drift, tribal food policy, environmental justice, urban gorilla gardening, native agriculture and much more! Featured workshop topics will include; development of an indigenous seed library, making cough medicine from local garden plants, and seed saving techniques.

Our wishes are always to convene the Anishinaabeg, our neighbors and relatives, to restore the plants and foods given to us by the Creator. We acknowledge that we are the most northern corn producers in the world. Our northern tribes have cultivated flint corn for over 2,500 years. We recall and remember this history, continue to practice and show the new generation. We are interested in restoring the agro-biodiversity of our land. We are interested in becoming better gardeners, harvesters and those who restore soil and air, not destroy it.

There are many very committed and amazing people coming to speak this year. We will feature local, regional, and international speakers. Here are a few selected bios;

Dan Longboat is Mohawk from the Six Nations of the Grand River. He is Director of the Indigenous Environmental Studies Program at Trent University, Ontario. Dan is known for his Traditional Haudenosaunee knowledge and has taught Mohawk culture at Trent in addition to his work in Indigenous Environmental Studies. Professor Longboat will be the keynote speaker on Friday, March 14th named The Roots of Indigenous Agriculture and presenting a workshop on Saturday called Biocultural framework for Indigenous Food Sustainability.

Amos Hinton Is presenting on sustainable agriculture from the Ponca tribe of Oklahoma. They grew 12,000 pounds of produce last summer, raised pigs and donated meat to tribal elders, and raised and sold eggs to their tribal members. Their goal is to produce all of their our food.

Henry Lickers For over 29 years, Henry Lickers of Cornwall has been Director of the Mohawk Council of Akwesasne Department of the Environment. He will talk about the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement and the importance of looking after the environment for future generations.

Rowen White, is a passionate seed saver. She is from the Mohawk community of Akwesasne, and curates an extensive collection of rare northeast native seeds. She is the co-founder of the Sierra Seed Cooperative, a local community seed organization focusing on local seed production and education, located in California. She is going to present her first nations seed keepers manual and will talk about the upcoming five-day "seed school" happening in May of this year at Shakopee.

Tatanka Wakpala Model Sustainable Community is a project whose foremost goal is to demonstrate how small, self-sustained, family oriented communities can flourish in today's consumerist society. They practice and teach a model of low cost, easily constructed, environmentally friendly community that can provide new opportunities for Native people to thrive while continuing their ancestors' teachings on how to live in harmony with Unci Maka (Mother Earth).

Over twenty-five presenters are coming as well as herbalists, gardeners, horticulturists, students and farmers from all four directions to share the knowledge of planting and harvesting. Come hear how indigenous nations are restoring traditional foods and working towards sustainable communities and network with neighboring tribal nations and get information to further develop your own community programs. Representatives from the Metis of Canada, Lakota, Bad River Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians, Oneida Nation of Wisconsin, Standing Rock Sioux, Mohawk, and Tesuque Pueblo are coming to share their knowledge with communities of the Great Lakes area.

Please bring your seeds and your stories for barter and seed swap sessions! For registration and information, contact; weseedlibrary@gmail.com or call; 218-375-2600 Conference lodging; Shooting Star Casino, Hotel and Events Center 777 S Casino Rd, Mahnomen, MN 56557

(218) 935-2701

 

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