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Stockbridge-Munsee Sacred Stories & Song

July 15, 2023 @ 10:00 am 12:00 pm EDT

Join us for a family-friendly event of stories, songs, and games with Stockbridge-Munsee sharer of knowkedge Shawn Stevens, Flying Deer Nature and Stockbridge-Munsee youth from Bowler, WI.

  • 10-11 Shawn Stevens sacred stories and song
  • 11-12 Activities
    • Messages to the Ancestors and the Future, with Shawn Stevens
    • Games for all ages, with Flying Deer Nature Center
    • Stone bead-making
    • Cordage from plant fibers, with Stockbridge Munsee youth mentors
    • Herbal healing balms for takeaway & tour of Collard City Growers garden herbs

Facilitators and Participating Organizations:

Shawn Stevens (Red Eagle) is an enrolled member of the Stockbridge-Munsee Band of Mohicans. He lives among his people, who are originally from the Hudson Valley, New York, but now reside in Bowler, Wisconsin. A spiritualist, musician, artist, historian, and sharer of knowledge, Shawn has been fulfilling his path journey for the past few decades by doing a variety of sharing in his people’s ancestral lands as well as the Midwest.

Shawn describes himself as a “Helper” not only to his people but to all. He explains that his spiritual path is to share the many things given to him for spiritual direction and purpose. He does not have, nor will accept, any titles such as “Medicine Man” or “Shaman.” Shawn is also a traditional Native American storyteller, drummer, dancer, singer, and flute player. He is an ordained minister of the Universal Church of Light and a certified facilitator of White Bison’s Mending Broken Hearts.

Shawn has been fulfilling his path journey for the past few decades by doing a variety of sharing in his peoples ancestral lands as well as the Midwest. Shawn describes himself as a “Helper” to not only his people, but to all of the Creator’s children. He explains that his Spiritual path is to share the many things given to him for direction and purpose.

Flying Deer Nature Center (FDNC) is a nonprofit wilderness school and community dedicated to mentoring children, youth, adults, and families in deep connection to nature, self, and others.

Our work aims not only to teach naturalist practices and wilderness survival skills, but also to foster in participants a lifelong relationship with nature and access to the gifts it brings: resilience, creativity, and the ability to listen deeply to ourselves and to others. We all need the benefits of connecting with the natural world and, in like measure, nature needs our care. This deep and reciprocal relationship with the earth is at the heart of our mission. 

Stockbridge-Munsee Youth

Eleven Stockbridge-Munsee youth have journeyed from their homes on the Reservation in Bowler, Wisconsin, for a week of natural wonders with Flying Deer Nature Center’s summer camp. They complete their visit to the Northeast to discover and walk on the land of their ancestors: Freedom Square is located on settler lands of the village of Unawhat’s Castle, where they will share with Shawn Stevens in songs, games and Native education. After this public event, the youth will have a radio workshop and boat rides on the Mahicanituck (Hudson River), who lived in harmony with nature for thousands of years, before being forcibly removed from their ancestral lands.

Sanctuary Eco-Art Trail project:

The Sanctuary Eco-Art Trail is dedicated to celebrating the sacred Mohican soils we are honored to tend. We are beneficiaries of millennia of human history unfolding in a majestic river valley, where the land has been nurtured by Indigenous hands and traumatized through industrial development and systemic inequity.

The Stockbridge-Munsee Tribe are in partnership on this project, which features Stockbridge-Munsee as well as other Indigenous artists and musicians, historians and storytellers, eco-artists, and muralists, connecting Indigenous wisdom to visions for a future of healing and reparations.

We understand that one goal of the Eco-Art Trail is to continue to bring our stories to life. Embedding our history and culture into a publicly accessible and self-guided trail will make it possible for our words and ways of being to connect with a wider audience.

Shannon Halsey, Tribal President, Stockbridge-Munsee Community Band of Mohican Indians

Learn more about about Stockbridge-Munsee Community Band of Mohicans and their stories of Origin and History.

The Sanctuary Eco-Art Trail’s urban nature walk on 6th Avenue weaves a journey from Glen St. to 101st St and Freedom Square. Check out our developing schedule of events ranging from summer ’23 through spring ’24 here.

The Sanctuary Eco-Art Trail is supported by the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) Our Town creative placemaking program, which supports activities that integrate arts, culture, and design into local efforts that strengthen communities over the long term.

With an earlier NEA Our Town grant, the Sanctuary collaborated with community to build the Freedom Square Art Stage. A decade later, NEA Our Town supports “Sanctuary Eco Art Trail,” as the space welcomes Stockbridge Munsee sharers of knowledge young and old.

35 5th Ave
Troy, NY 12180 United States

We are committed to lowering the barriers to access for events at The Sanctuary for Independent Media. For people who are hard of hearing or deaf, blind or low-vision, or whose physical limitations can interfere with a satisfying experience, let us know two weeks in advance so we can make appropriate arrangements.

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We use art and participatory action to promote social and environmental justice and freedom of creative expression.

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