Vashon Welcomes Renowned Activist Winona LaDuke


Vashon’s non-profit community is coming together to host Winona LaDuke; a leader and activist working on many issues including environmental justice, indigenous rights and local food systems. Ms. LaDuke movingly describes indigenous people’s resistance to environmental and cultural degradation and presents an inspiring vision, relevant to us all, of political, spiritual, and ecological transformation. She will speak at an event on Vashon Island Saturday, March 10th at 6:30pm at Open Space for the Arts and Community. The event is a fundraiser for Honor the Earth, the organization she co-founded in 1993. Tickets are $25 for general admission and $15 for students and seniors. No one will be turned away for lack of funds. A catered reception with LaDuke will be held before the main event from 6-7 pm. Tickets for this special opportunity are $150. All tickets are available at Brown Paper Ticket and the Vashon Bookshop.

Patrick Christie, a UW professor with prior links to LaDuke, convened the group in charge of organizing the event. “It is truly an honor to host such a prominent leader.” said Christie. “Winona LaDuke is one of the premier movement thinkers and actors of our time. We are so grateful that she is taking the time to come and bring her powerful message as we face our own regional struggles against the fossil fuel industry.”
The event will be a festive evening of music, community, drink and light refreshments, and, of course, a talk by Winona LaDuke. “We want to send her home with resources for Honor the Earth to fight the Enbridge Line 3 oil pipeline proposal, so we hope to bring the community together to raise her a lot of money. And we plan to have a great time doing it” says Christie.

The evening will include diverse and inspiring music and visual arts for a multi-media immersive experience. To open the evening, subMerge, a Seattle-based art & music collective, will combine music with image projections of Winona’s work, pipeline resistance, and nature. Paul Cheoketen Wagner will offer songs on the Native American flute, accompanying salmon dancers. Some’tet, an improvisational Vashon jazz ensemble, will perform. After hearing from LaDuke, the evening will evolve into an after party led by subMerge, pairing house, techno, and electronica with visual and textile arts.
LaDuke is currently involved in stopping a Tar Sands Oil pipeline proposal that threatens the land, waters, and indigenous sovereignty of many Nations in Minnesota. The struggle is at a critical point and donations will be used to support efforts to stop this pipeline that would bring oil across tribal lands, including sensitive wild rice growing lakes, and on to ports in the Great Lakes.

Winona LaDuke is executive director of Honor the Earth , which supports indigenous communities on the front lines of environmental protection in North America. She lives and works on the White Earth reservation in northern Minnesota, where she is founder of the White Earth Land Recovery Project, a reservation-based non-profit that works to protect native seeds, heritage crops, and indigenous foodways from patenting and genetic engineering.

Hosting organizations include Vashon Nature Center, Vashon Maury Island Land Trust, Vashon Heritage Museum, Backbone Campaign, Fable Collections, Open Space for Arts and Community.