Feb 01

February’s Sustainable Tuesday Line-Up, Storytelling through Star Knowledge, and Upcoming Wolf Hunt Forum

Happy Friday, everyone! I hope that you are staying warm on this bitterly cold day.  The weather will hopefully warm slightly this weekend, and I know that I’m looking forward to going outside and enjoying this beautiful new snow.

If you read the Bemidji Pioneer earlier this week, you probably saw a feature on our most recent Sustainable Tuesdays event!  We held a Native Foods Cooking Class with Chef Sean Sherman of Black Sheep Chefs. Sean showed us how to make three delicious recipes using indigenous ingredients.  We made venison stew, turkey pemmican with puffed wild rice, and herb flatbread. Had it been in the springtime, we could have gone out and gathered many of the ingredients directly from the wild!  Click each dish for Sean’s recipes.

Here are some photos of the evening:

We understand that the weather made getting to the cooking class a bit difficult.  We hope that those who had signed up but were unable to make it will be able to participate in future events with us!

The size of our group worked well with Sean’s class, as everyone had a chance to work on each recipe and help prepare the meal.  At the end, Sean created a beautiful plate of food (see below), and we each attempted re-create his plating design.

We’d like to thank Sean for sharing his cooking knowledge and teaching us about indigenous ingredients and what wild edibles we can be using in our area. His recipes were so simple and easy to follow, and came together effortlessly.  Hopefully our cooking class attendees will be recreating them at home soon!

If you missed this event, keep your eyes posted for upcoming footage on Upstream TV and Lakeland!

Here’s our line-up for February’s Sustainable Tuesday events!  While we usually have our month organized a theme, this month is a hodge-podge of some different, unique events.  We hope it will keep you busy during this chilly month of February!  Click here for a poster of our events!

Unless noted, events are held from 5:30 to 7:30pm at the Rail River Folk School (303 Railroad St SW)

Tuesday, February 5th: DNR Public Hearing on Endangered Species*

(6pm to 8pm at the Sanford Center)

  • Sustainable Tuesdays is taking a field trip to the DNR’s public hearing!  Join us as we attend one of five statewide hearings on the proposed amendments to the Rules Relating to the Endangered, Threatened, and Special Concern Species. 67 new species are being added to the list, including moose and the boreal owl. We will meet at the Sanford Center to attend this hearing, and then follow up with a short discussion.

Tuesday, February 12th: Seed Exchange and Garden Planning

  • Are you interested in starting a garden, but are unsure of where to begin?  Come learn from Diana Kuklinski and Rochelle Quick as they share their knowledge of garden planning. We’ll talk about what to plant when, varieties that grow well in Bemidji, and learn several tips for a resilient garden.  We’ll also be sharing and exchanging seeds!

Tuesday, February 19th: Curing the Winter Blues (at Harmony Co-op Community Kitchen)

  • Do you feel like the cold, bleak winter weather is getting you down? Come have tea with us as we explore different natural, herbal remedies to help cure your winter blues. We’ll be meeting in Harmony Co-op’s Community Kitchen.

Tuesday, February 26th: Exploring Treaty Rights and Sustainability

  • Join us as we learn about treaty rights in Minnesota. We will explore how treaty rights affect choices to live more sustainably, for recognizing and upholding these rights is vital when it comes to sustaining cultural connections to the environment. Guest speaker to be announced.

Because the DNR’s public hearing is happening during our regular Sustainable Tuesdays time, we decided that this would be a great opportunity for us to engage in another local event.  Attending a public hearing such as this is a great way to learn more about this issue—especially because some modifications to the DNR’s list are raising some controversy.  This is also a chance to express your opinion on the proposed changes and share your voice.

If you would like to submit comments but cannot attend the meeting, you can submit them via the Department of Natural Resource’s website.There, you can also read more about the proposed changes.

I am going to share some articles below that provide some more insight into these public hearings. We’ll have a short discussion following the event, if people are interested in discussing the issues surrounding the DNR’s updates.

Moose declining: Wolves, eagles upgraded, but endangered list continues to grow

  • “The moose, which has seen a dramatically declining population, will become an official species of concern on the new list – the first major update to problem species in Minnesota since 1996.”

 Citizens argue for protection of gray wolves

  •  “Minnesota’s gray wolves should not be hunted, according to testimony of four people Wednesday at a Department of Natural Resources hearing in New Ulm.”

As Minnesota moose population declines, DNR says annual hunt remains biologically sound

  • Many people who live in Minnesota’s North Country say they’re seeing fewer moose. But despite diligent and ongoing research, nobody yet understands why, and a growing number of Minnesotans are wondering why, in the face of such a decline, moose are still being hunted.”

We hope to see you at the Sanford Center at 6pm on Tuesday!

But before then, there are some wonderful events coming up this weekend that you don’t want to miss!  Both of these are sponsored by Bemidji State University’s Council of Indian Students, and this is a great opportunity to support their events.

TONIGHT is “Storytelling through Star Knowledge with Jim Rock”

Where: American Indian Resource Center in the Gathering Place

Date: February 1st, 2013

Time: 6-8:30pm

Jim Rock is an educator and an expert in astronomy and indigenous star knowledge. He has worked for NASA, the NOAA, the Minnesota Planetarium Society, the MN Historical Society, and much more. He currently teaches a Native Skywatchers course at Augsburg College.

Jim Rock speaking about his indigenous view of the world.

Jim Rock speaking about his indigenous view of the world. http://www.pieducators.com/wisdom/jim_rock

Check out this fascinating interview with Jim to learn more about how his indigenous worldview has shaped his teaching of math and science!  It’s long, but a wonderful and thought-provoking read.  http://www.pieducators.com/wisdom/jim_rock

Then, this Saturday, I encourage you all to attend this forum on the wolf hunt, also being held at BSU’s American Indian Resource Center.

Ganawenimind Gishiimenaan Ma’iingan, Protecting Our Brother the Wolf:

How do we protect Minnesota Wolves & Stop/Alter the Hunt?

Saturday, February 2, 2013, 1 to 3 p.m.

American Indian Resource Center, Bemidji State University (BSU)

  • An Indigenous Perspective: Red Lake Chairman Floyd Jourdain, Jr. & Ponemah Spiritual Elder Larry Stillday
  • Science and Myth: Dave Conner, Red Lake DNR; and Reyna Crow, Northwoods Wolf Alliance
  • Politics: Maureen Hackett, Howling for Wolves
  • A Call to Action: Bob Shimek, Environmental Activist
  • Keynote Address & Wrap-up: Barry Babcock, Co-founder of Nishime Ma’iingan, and Environmental Activist

Sponsored by Nishime Ma’iingan (Barry Babcock & Michael Meuers) & The BSU Council of Indian Students (Vincent Staples-Graves, Chair)

Co-Sponsors: American Indian Resource Center, BSU; Northwoods Wolf Alliance (Sandy Skinaway & Reyna Crow); Howling for Wolves (Maureen Hackett)

That’s all for the week!  I hope you all enjoy the weekend and this beautiful snow.

As always, our program depends on your input and feedback, and we welcome your ideas and suggestions to broaden our community. Sustainable Tuesdays feature a variety of learning opportunities focused on sustainability that connect our beautiful, vibrant community and is a partnership program with the Indigenous Environmental Network, MN GreenCorps, Rail River Folk School and BSU’s Sustainability Office.

For more information, contact Caitlyn Schuchhardt at 755-3765 or Simone Senogles at 751-4967.

With peace,