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Archive for Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Haskell community blesses 20 new trees planted on campus

Members of the Haskell Indian Nations University community participate in a tree-blessing ceremony Wednesday at the campus. Elder Benny Smith, in black hat, conducted the ceremony.

Members of the Haskell Indian Nations University community participate in a tree-blessing ceremony Wednesday at the campus. Elder Benny Smith, in black hat, conducted the ceremony.

May 6, 2009

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Haskell community blesses 20 new trees planted on campus

Family members gathered on the Haskell campus today to dedicate trees to their loved ones. Enlarge video

Members of the Haskell Indian Nations University community on Wednesday took part in a tree blessing ceremony for 20 new trees donated by Black Hills Energy Corp.

The trees were mostly clustered in front of Osceola-Keokuk Hall, and were each “adopted” by the community.

Siblings Alta Cobell and Jay Pewenofkit from Eudora adopted a tree in memory of their father, Amos Pewenofkit Jr., who played football at Haskell in the 1960s.

The siblings said they were motivated to adopt a tree — a Snowdrift Crabapple — to preserve their father’s memory.

“They last a long time,” Cobell said. “Enough for our kids later on to remember that we adopted a tree on behalf of their grandfather.”

All trees also came with a plaque and a name of the tree in the native language of the families who adopted them. Cobell and Pewenofkit sought out Comanche elders to get the proper spelling of the tree to place on the plaque in the Comanche language.

Elder Benny Smith performed a tree blessing ceremony for each of the trees Wednesday morning before a luncheon for all the participating members.

Smith is retired from Haskell after 32 years of service, most recently as a director of counseling services for the university. He said he performed a blessing universal among many different tribal groups for each of the trees.

Comments

farmgal 4 years, 11 months ago

oakcliffgirl, to clarify, this was in the 60s & early 70s. so when you say "are" dumped...i'm sure the stuff has been removed by now.

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farmgal 4 years, 11 months ago

yes, truck loads and truck loads of perfectly good dorm room furniture (desks, chairs, wardrobes, etc) were often taken out back (south of the campus, before you get to what is now 31st st.) and dumped. had to make way for the new furniture that was being purchased with our tax dollars. typical with the gov't., the furniture couldn't be donate to charity or anything like that, it had to be destroyed. shameful waste of tax dollars, as was all the destruction of good buildings and beautiful mature trees. don't get me wrong, i'm glad they are planting more trees and benny smith is the nicest man you could ever meet, but i'm not sure people understand the volume of wastefulness that has taken place over the years at this school.

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oakcliffgirl 4 years, 11 months ago

farmgal are you speaking of a specific spot on campus where these items are dumped?

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Sean Livingstone 4 years, 11 months ago

farmgal, if you don't cut down trees, you cannot get an excuse to buy new trees. So businesses that grow, plant, and transport trees will not earn money... and then they will not spent money, and government will not get tax monies. Cutting back is one thing, growing the economic base is another.

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farmgal 4 years, 11 months ago

I'm glad they are planting some trees. It's nice that they can replace some of the ones that have been destroyed unnecessarily over the years, every time they've torn down a building or put up a building. I remember those neat, huge, 3-story homes at the south end of campus. Torn down, along with all the beautiful mature trees. And truck load after truck load of perfectly good furniture taken to the area way to the south of the campus and dumped. The federal gov't sure knows how to waste money.

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justfornow 4 years, 11 months ago

Members of the Haskell Indian Nations University community should be blessing the SLT.

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TriSigmaKS 4 years, 11 months ago

Solomon, why don't you go read up about Native American culture and then you can comment.

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bangaranggerg 4 years, 11 months ago

I wonder what the reaction would be if that comment had made a lick of sense?

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Eybea Opiner 4 years, 11 months ago

I wonder what the reaction would be if KU had a ceremony in which a priest blessed newly planted trees?

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