The Canoes are Coming to Lopez

Submitted by The Gathering of the Eagles Canoe Encampment.

On Sunday, May 22, 2022, Indigenous paddlers from Washington, Oregon, and Hawaii will converge on Lopez as part of The Gathering of the Eagles Canoe Encampment. This is an event being coordinated by Lummi community leaders who are eager to get back on the water and have a gathering. Approximately ten canoes will leave Washington Park in Anacortes around 10 AM on the 22nd and are scheduled to arrive around 4 PM at Odlin County Park, Lopez, weather dependent. The voyaging canoes will be greeted by Lopez elders, followed at 6 PM by ceremony, protocol, and an exchange of culture, centered on a theme of “Moving forward in hope, healing, honor, happiness and hospitality.” Canoe families will spend that night at Odlin Park and depart the next morning for San Juan, then on to Orcas, and finally to the Lummi Nation Reservation on May 27th through 30th for a potlatch to honor master carver Jewell Praying Wolf James.

The public is invited to participate in the arrival and later celebrations on Lopez. To greet the canoes, parking at Odlin by 3:30 is recommended. Volunteers are helping in various ways to welcome the canoe families. Information will be updated on Facebook by searching Esqaplh etse Kwelengsen (Gathering of the Eagles).

Out of respect for and to protect elders, vaccinations will be required at the encampment; no community potluck is planned.