Taino Woods Update – AUGUST 2022

Usa Mauka Itaino,

Purification Lodge:
As we use the heat and warmth and rich sunlight of this Summer Solstice to grow our foods and medicines, our joys and celebrations, and our hearts for Atabeyra and the beautiful life that She and Great Spirit have given us, we are called to gather in community and in ceremony. Our purification lodges in the weeks ahead will align with the intentions of expressing ourselves authentically through gratitude and creation as well as will be in alignment with the New or Full Moons. Here are the Saturdays for our Purification Lodges: 

  • August 13th (Full Moon + Drumming Circle)
  • August 27th (New Moon)
  • September 10th (Danza + Full Moon)
  • September 17th (Full Moon)

After receiving the purification lodge medicine, it is important to allow the body, mind, and spirit to fully rest and allow time for the medicine to fully integrate. We encourage participants to stay at Taino Woods overnight as the Land is an excellent support for your medicinal assimilation. 

To reserve your purification lodge spot, or to express interest in staying upon the Land, email us at: tainowoodsny@gmail.com.

Danza with Miguel Sague:
We are hosting an incredibly special event Saturday September 10th; our very first Danza! Joining and leading us through this wonderful opportunity is Miguel Sague, our Elder from Cuba. Behike Miguel is an amazing Taino leader who will share his knowledge on our traditions as well as teach us the traditional dance steps performed for thousands of years by our Taino and Arawakan ancestors. (Our Arawakan ancestors migrated into the Caribbean over 2000 years ago.) This dance is still performed by the Arawakan tribes such as the Lokonos and the Wapishanas who live in the South American rainforest. For information about Behike Miguel and his wealth of knowledge and kind heart, visit: More on Miguel Sague. On this Danza day, we will gather for a full moon ceremony, a (short) danza, and a purification lodge ceremony.

To reserve your spot, learn more information about our Danza, and book a camping site for the weekend, contact us at: tainowoodsny@gmail.com

Drumming Circle:
On Friday August 12th from 5pm to 7pm, our Drumming Circle will gather to practice traditional songs and drumming as a form of a prayer and a way to build strength and connection in our community. Join us! 

Fire Keeper Apprenticeship:
Our Fire Keeper Apprenticeship is an intimate training program in the traditional ways of our indigenous purification lodges. On Saturdays August 13th, August 27th, and September 17th, fire keeper apprentices will have the opportunity to learn how to open the directions, dress the lodge, cedar the lodge and community, gather the water, catch the stones, assist the fire keeper, and in time, become the main fire keeper. 

If you are seeking to learn more about this ancient and beautiful ceremony and how we can continue the traditions and healing from our ancestors, we would love to hear from you. Email us at: Tainowoodsny@gmail.com.

Call for Volunteers:
We are seeking volunteers who can support us in completing the following tasks before the Fall and Winter seasons ahead: 

  • Garden/Greenhouse framework
  • Patching the walkways
  • Wood splitting 
  • Shed construction
  • Tipi setup
  • Bell tent deck 

It is imperative that we complete these tasks before the Fall and Winter to maintain the accessibility of Taino Woods all year long. 

Our Volunteer Weekends will be: 

  • August 5th-7th
  • August 12th-14th
  • September 2nd-5th
  • September 23rd-25th

Remember, all volunteer check-ins for work weekends are Fridays between 4pm and 9pm; or Saturdays by 8am. Volunteering will wrap up by 2pm on Sundays. 

If you are unable to volunteer at Taino Woods, we graciously ask you to make a monetary donation to our GoFundMe Page: Taino Woods Rising. Your donations will significantly help us with the costs of fixing the ATV and purchasing a UTV, an incinerating toilet, and a GoPro for documenting our Apprenticeship and other marketing purposes; as well as the maintenance of the campgrounds. 

Your Support:
We have had an eventful month of workshops, ceremonies, and visits from some of our most special volunteers.

  • A special shoutout to our Fire Keeper assistants Somaliah, Nohelani, Cai, and Lauren on July 16th and 17th! You all contributed so beautifully to these ceremonies. 
  • A successful Tabaku and Kambo ceremony with Tabaku Taita Roman Red Hawk. Thank you Roman Red Hawk for teaching us about this wonderful medicine, and to all of the beautiful souls for attending. Your energy certainly contributed to the beauty of this workshop.
  • We have started a mushroom garden! But really, it was our wonderful community sisters Lauren and Somaliah who inoculated Lions Mane and Blue Oyster mushrooms. We can’t wait to see how these grow!
  • A special thank you to our wonderful kitchen moms Gabrielle and Nana Zakia. We love you so much! 
  • To Michael – thank you so much for bringing the Pow Wow drum for our Drumming Circle. This was such a fun and amazing opportunity to play the drum as one! (We are still seeking Drumming Circle members; contact us at: Tainowoodsny@gmail.com if you are interested; we’d love to have you!)

Taino Woods Community, we love you dearly. Thank you for all of your help and dedication and love. Taino Woods wouldn’t be where we are without you. And come through! We, Chantel and Jesse and the Land, miss you; and would love to see your radiant faces at Taino Woods. 

Han Hakatu!