Richie Plass is planning a commemorative and sacred walk beginning on June 2, 2010 in Wiscosin. He estimates that it will be completed a week later.
This is Richie Plass and his group with The Governor of Wiscosin
Let Richie tell us.
1. Why are you doing this?
Two reasons. First, education. Up until two years ago, I had never known about this removal of the Menominee from Lake Poygan to the present site of our reservation. There is so much history related to our people that preceded this move, what happened along the way and of course what happened once we got there. Second, responsibility. Once I found out that one of the leaders of this walk had the same name I carry, Powekonnay, I felt it was my responsibility to acknowledge, honor and carry on this important part of Menominee history.
2. Can anyone walk with you?
Yes, by all means, if you, a group, students or whomever would like to walk with me, I would be honored to have you with us. If you or anyone is interested in doing this, please send me all the names and e-mails so I can keep everyone informed. The route has been laid out and as far as a time line, the Opening Ceremony will be on June 1, 2010 and the walk will begin on June 2, 2010. As far as how long will it take, that I don't really know. I feel I can do 10 to 15 miles a day and the walk will be about 70 miles. But, weather and my own health barriers may have something to say about the actual time. I have been telling people about four to five days.
3. Can we make donations?
Yes, for sure. I have been in contact with various sources and all the money donated will be handled by an outside agency that I trust. The money donated will go to equipment (Tents, shoes, water, juices) we will need along the way. Plus, if we get enough money donated and because I have been asked about Elders and/or people with handicaps, I would really like to offer a room for them to stay along the route. As for myself, I will be camping on the route. Anyone who would like to do the same are more than welcome.
4. Is there a minimum amount for donations?
Kind of. Let me explain. If you want to make a personal donation, any amount will be accepted. As for businees or corporate donations, we are asking for a minimum amount of $200.00. All the names and identifications of the donators will be posted and acknowledged. To make it so your donations can be used as a possible tax deduction for you, please make you donations to: "Ateqnohkew Pemohneaw", "a walk that tells a sacred story." That is how it will be listed on our special account.
5. Can my students participate?
Yes, by all means. Again, this walk is to be an educational process, so no matter what grade, what school or what class, this is a unique opportunity for students and teachers alike to learn first-hand a part of Menominee, Wisconsin and United States history on the effects on group of First Nation people that happened all across America.
6. How can we help?
I am not an expert on this. If you have any ideas or other input on what we're planning, please feel free to offer whatever you can. This walk is a "living" process of our history.
The Opening Ceremony is set for June 1, 2010. I have been in contact with various people for this ceremony. The drum group from the Menominee Indian High School will be there. A Menominee Veteran will be doing a Pipe Ceremony. I have aksed other Tribal members to speak. We will have a feast. But, EVERYONE is invited to participate. If you might know of someone who might be interested in being there, please let me know. Some very good friends of mine, Mr. and Mrs. Wayne Silas have offered to do ALL the food preparation for the walk. They will do the Opening Ceremony, feed us each night along the route and do the Closing Ceremony once we reach our destination. This a gracious offer that I am honored to have been given. As for the Closing Ceremony, besides the feast, the High School drum group will be there, another Pipe Ceremony and. "Wind Eagle", a Nationally known drum group from our reservation will also participate. But as I have been saying all along, anyone and everyone is invited. all i ask is that I be given the names and contacts so i can give them the proper recognition and acknowledgement.
If you, your company or anyone would like to make a donation, be it monetary or anything else, please send it to:
2542 He Nis ra Ln.
Green Bay, WI. 54304
Thank you all very much, and I hope you all have a GREAT Holiday Season,