Saturday, October 10, 2015

Treaty Awareness walkers continue through Michigan to Ohio and on to D.C.

Participants in the Treaty Awareness Walk arrive at the Capitol in Lansing on Oct. 6, 2015, on their way to Washington, D.C. (Photo © and courtesy Angeline OzhaashkweBiik Antoine)

LANSING -- The Treaty Awareness Walk from Rexton, Mich., to Lansing was a success. Walkers arrived in Lansing as scheduled on Tuesday, Oct. 6, and held a march near the Capitol building. Now they are continuing through Michigan to Ohio and on to Washington, D.C., where they hope to arrive on Nov. 6, 2015.

Participants in the Treaty Awareness Walk march near the Capitol Building in Lansing on Oct. 6, 2015. (Photo © and courtesy Angeline OzhaashkweBiik Antoine)

"Today (Saturday, Oct. 10) is the last leg of the Michigan route. Walkers will be heading south on M52 from Chelsea, Mich., to the Ohio border. They will be greeted by David Gaskin who, along with Joe Hock, will be walking the eagle staff to Washington DC. If you live near where they are walking PLEASE JOIN THEM! ‪#‎nomines‬ ‪#‎nograymont‬ ‪#‎shutdownline5‬ ‪#‎honorthetreaties," writes Angeline OzhaashkweBiik Antoine, who has shared her photos of the walk with Keweenaw Now.

Antoine noted the walk to Lansing was a success and attracted the attention of bystanders who were not previously aware of government land deals, such as the sale/exchange of 10,000 acres of Michigan public land to Graymont Mining Co., which Native Americans believe violates their treaty rights on ceded territory.

Amanda Nimke Ballard of Chelsea, Mich., carries the staff during the Oct. 6 Treaty Awareness Walk in Lansing. She has also provided lodging and transportation for the walkers in Chelsea, where they stopped before heading for Ohio today. (Photo © and courtesy Angeline OzhaashkweBiik Antoine)

"It was great to see so many different tribes represented at the march on Tuesday," Antoine said. "In all I have met people from eight different tribes on this walk. In doing this walk we not only wanted to bring awareness to Graymont and Line 5, but we also wanted to bring about unity between the tribes. We are all one people and the walk, the march, and the show of support has proven that."

Another participant in the walk, Darryl Brown of St. Ignace, Mich., writes, "Defending the treaties is an important way to protect the Water and Earth. The Treaty Awareness Walk created enthusiasm and inspiration to native people to be Idle No More and provided many ways for people to be involved. I pray it provides more action by bringing people together to stop the senseless destruction of the land and risk taking regarding the fresh water lakes in Michigan."

Click here to follow the Treaty Awareness Walk and see more photos on Facebook.

Visit treatyawareness.com to obtain more information or make a donation.

Friday, October 09, 2015

Rozsa Center to host "Senses of Land" Gallery exhibit, Keweenaw Symphony Orchestra "Violapalooza" concert Oct. 10

Rock Run Creek Forest, by Cathleen Faubert. (Photo by Keweenaw Now)

HOUGHTON -- The Rozsa Center will host two events Saturday evening, Oct. 10: The Keweenaw Symphony Orchestra "Violapalooza" concert at 7:30 p.m. and the reception for the art exhibit "Senses of Land" in the Rozsa Center Gallery from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Come early for the concert and enjoy the art exhibit and reception in the Rozsa Center Gallery, located in the lower level of the Rozsa Center for the Performing Arts at Michigan Tech.

"Senses of Land" in Rozsa Center Gallery

Senses of Land features work by three contemporary artists who focus on landscape, ecology, and our place in nature and community. Artists will feature work that explores our sensory and personal connections to diverse landscapes and how we find our ways among the places where we live.

"Senses of Land" features the artworks of Allen Morris (photography), Sage Dawson (map making), Cathleen Faubert (scent and memory) and the poetry of David Ebenbach.

Visitors can experience "scent and memory" related to Cathleen Faubert's photo of Rock Run Creek by testing the scent she provides in the blue bottle. (Her hand-crafted scent is priced at $80 an ounce and includes Wild Ginger, Limestone, Spicebush Berries, Creek Water, Bloodroot, Dwarf Iris, Rattlesnake Plantain, Elderflower, Mushroom and Blackberry.) (Photo by Keweenaw Now)

The reception is come-and-go, but curator Lisa Johnson, Michigan Tech assistant professor in Visual and Performing Arts, will give a gallery talk at 6:30 p.m. Refreshments will be served and all are welcome.

The exhibit, free and open to the public, continues through Nov. 13, 2015.

Keweenaw Symphony Orchestra:  "Violapalooza"

What is a Violapalooza?  Lollapalooza with violas? Picture a host of young Kurt Cobains with violins. Playing classical music. And, instead of Nirvana, the concert will feature the stars of the Keweenaw Symphony Orchestra and special guest artists -- along with the emerging, talented violists of the Keweenaw region --all on stage together at the Rozsa!

What is a Viola you ask? According to Wikipedia: "The viola is a bowed string instrument that is slightly larger than a violin, with a lower and deeper sound." The KSO’s Violapalooza this Saturday will feature many, many violas! Want to learn more? Come to the 4th Keweenaw Honors String Festival at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 10, at the Rozsa Center for the Performing Arts, and find out!

Guest artists include violist Pamela McConnell of the Bergonzi String Quartet and guest conductor Daniel O'Bryant. Local string musicians and the Keweenaw Youth Symphony Orchestra join together with McConnell and the KSO in a "Violapalooza" celebration of the viola.

Tickets for the 4th Keweenaw Honors String Festival concert are on sale now -- $19 for adults, $6 for youth, and no charge for Michigan Tech students with the Experience Tech fee. Tickets are available by phone at (906) 487-2073, online at Rozsa.mtu.edu, in person at the Central Ticketing Office in the Student Development Complex, or at the Rozsa Box Office the evening of the performance. Please note the Rozsa Box Office only opens two hours prior to performances.

(Insert photo courtesy Rozsa Center)

Wednesday, October 07, 2015

Copper Country Community Arts Center to exhibit sculptures by Amanda Szot through October 31

Birch shrine compressed. This is part of the new exhibit in the Kerredge Gallery, "The Voices of Trees," sculptures by Amanda Szot. (Photo courtesy Copper Country Community Arts Center)

HANCOCK -- The new exhibition in the Copper Country Community Arts Center’s Kerredge Gallery is "The Voices of Trees," sculptures by Amanda Szot. The public is invited to a reception with the artist from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 9.

The Ironwood artist works with wood, stones, books, wire, beadwork, cast iron, and sand to create sculptures that honor the forest and tree-bird connections. Her freestanding sculptures grace the gallery along with boxed assemblages as shrines. Szot's work addresses the life cycle of trees and the ways trees are made "useful" beyond their natural state.

"This group of sculptures depicts my thoughts about how trees have their own language, as well as the voices that other beings have given to them," Szot says. "Many of the sculptures are made from books, thus bringing the cycle of life to a full circle: tree to wood pulp to paper to book, now back to tree imagery. I have also included found pieces of lumber, firewood, driftwood, branches, and bark in many of the sculptures. I consider each of these thrown-away scraps as precious keepers of tree wisdom, each formed over many years of living growth, then transformed by human hands, taking on even more wisdom and history."

This exhibition is supported by a grant from the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs with funding from the National Endowment for the Arts. The Copper Country Community Arts Center is located at 126 Quincy Street in Hancock. The exhibition will be on display through October 31, 2015.

Tuesday, October 06, 2015

Nickel company seeks 320-acre metallic mineral lease on state land near Eagle Mine; comment deadline is Oct. 12

This map indicates with an M the parcels in section 35 (near northwest corner of map), Michigamme Township in Marquette County, where North American Nickel (US) Inc. has requested a direct metallic mineral lease from the State of Michigan. (Map courtesy Michigan Department of Natural Resources)

UPDATED (Oct. 8): MARQUETTE -- North American Nickel (US) Inc., of Chicago, Illinois, has requested a direct metallic mineral lease from the State of Michigan covering Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR) metallic mineral rights located in Michigamme Township, Marquette County, Michigan, containing a total of 320 acres, more or less, further described as: SW1/4; N1/2 SE1/4; W1/2 NW1/4, Section 35, T51N, R29W.

Save the Wild U.P. (SWUP) has expressed concern about this lease request for 320 acres of Escanaba River State Forest -- home to the endangered Kirtland’s Warbler, cultural history, and tribal resources.

Joseph Youngman of the Copper Country Audubon Club captured this rare view of a pair of endangered Kirtland's Warblers. (Photo © and courtesy Joseph Youngman)

"This parcel contains an archaeologically significant site, and is located just northwest of the Eagle Mine site," said Alexandra Maxwell, SWUP executive director.** (See below.)

The DNR's recommended lease classification is Leasable Development with Restrictions.

The restrictions, as noted in an August 2015 DNR Direct Lease Review Summary, are stated by the Wildlife Division and the lead reviewer as follows: "To protect nesting neo-tropical migrant birds and any potential Kirtland warblers during the nesting and fledging period work should be restricted from 6/1 – 7/15."

In addition, the Wildlife Division, in a July 27, 2015, review, stated, "This parcel is also a known archaeological site; any mining exploration should be done in conjunction input with Michigan History, Arts and Libraries (HAL)."

On Aug. 14, 2015, the Forest Management Division confirmed archaeological findings, stating, "Archeological hit in this parcel. Office of the State Archaeologist must be consulted for direction."

Written comments from interested parties, relative to the request to lease the specified mineral rights, may be submitted by October 12, 2015, to Karen Maidlow, Property Specialist, Office of Minerals Management, DNR, P.O. Box 30452, Lansing MI 48909-7952, or MaidlowK@michigan.gov.*

Save the Wild U.P. to host walking tour of site

Save the Wild U.P. will be leading a special historical walking tour of this potentially threatened site on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2015. The tour will feature stories by C. Fred Rydholm; the Andersen homestead ruins (from 115 years ago) and Anderson Lake; and a discussion of Yellow Dog Plains logging, Bentley Trail, pre-European indigenous presence, treaty-protected tribal resources and the current threats from mineral exploration.

Meet at Big Bay Outfitters at 12 noon. Tickets are just $10 per person. To reserve a place on the tour email rsvp@savethewildup.org with the subject line Hike to the Andersen Homestead.

* Click here for more information on State of Michigan metallic mineral leasing.

** UPDATE: Editor's Note: Originally Save the Wild U.P. stated there were two archaeological sites. Alexandra Maxwell notified us today, Oct. 8, that there is one, so we have corrected this statement.

From the Editor: Are you viewing our blog with a smart phone?

Dear Readers,
It has been called to our attention that our right-hand column -- which now has News Briefs with important announcements at the top, links to slide shows, archives and more -- is not always visible on a smart phone screen. If you are seeing only this main news column, scroll down to the end of it and look for a link saying "View Web version." Click on it to see our full 2-column page. You can then move your screen to the right and adjust the text size to read our right-hand column. If this doesn't work, please let us know by posting a comment here or emailing us at andersm@pasty.com. Thanks!

Monday, October 05, 2015

Treaty Awareness Walk to D.C. to reach Lansing Oct. 6 for march near Michigan Capitol

Poster for Treaty Awareness Walk courtesy Joseph Hock.

LANSING -- Michigan Idle No More members and friends have been walking from Rexton, Mich., to Lansing since Sept. 19 and expect to arrive in Lansing tomorrow, Tuesday, Oct. 6, for a march near the Capitol to mark the first leg of their Treaty Awareness Walk to Washington, D.C.

Walkers from Idle No More Michigan are on their way from Rexton to Lansing and Washington, D.C. to call attention to Treaty Rights issues. Pictured here during their walk in late September are, from left, Steven Perry, LTBB (Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians); Evelyn Rose, GTB (Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians); Angeline OzhaashkweBiik Antoine, GTB; Terry Antoine, GTB. (Photo © and courtesy Angeline OzhaashkweBiik Antoine)

The walkers hope to raise awareness of the 1836 Treaty of Washington between the United States and representatives of the Ottawa and Chippewa nations of Michigan -- which was done to avoid forced removal of the indigenous people living in Michigan and which guaranteed rights of hunting, fishing and gathering in the ceded territories. These rights are threatened by the State of Michigan's projected land sale/exchange of about 10,000 acres to Graymont, a Canadian mining company, for limestone mining in the eastern Upper Peninsula.*

They are also marching to show their concerns about Enbridge's Line 5, a 62-year-old oil pipeline under the Straits of Mackinac which many have asked to be shut down because of the threat of a potential oil spill.**

Supporters of the walk are invited to join it for varied periods of time. Pictured here in northern Michigan are Angeline OzhaashkweBiik Antoine, GTB; Evelyn Rose, GTB; Lucius Antoine, GTB; and Elijah Boomer. (Photo © and courtesy Angeline OzhaashkweBiik Antoine)

Anyone who wishes to join the walkers in Lansing should meet them in front of the Lansing Center, 333 E Michigan Ave., at 3 p.m. tomorrow, Tuesday, Oct. 6 (see star on map below).

This map shows the route for the Treaty Awareness Walk near the Michigan Capitol Building in Lansing Tuesday, Oct. 6, 2015. Click on map for larger version. (Map courtesy Angeline OzhaashkweBiik Antoine of Idle No More Michigan).

Supporters of the Walk can make donations on line to help the walkers with their 900-mile journey. Visit treatyawareness.com to learn more. Follow the Walk on Facebook here.

Editor's Notes:

* To learn more about the Graymont issue, see our Feb. 22, 2015, article, "DNR Chief approves mineral rights exchange with Graymont but delays decision on 10,000-acre land transaction; residents, groups express opposition to Graymont project."

** See also our most recent article on the Graymont and Line 5 protests: "Two protests near Mackinac Bridge defend Native treaty rights, oppose UP mining projects and Enbridge Line 5: Videos, photos."