Time: June 23, 2012 from 10am to 1pm
Location: Laguna de Santa Rosa Wetland Preserve
Street: 390 Morris Street
City/Town: Sebastopol, CA 95472
Event Type: ritual, eco-depth, earth, ecology
Organized By: Dianne Monroe
Latest Activity: May 24, 2012
This ceremony is part of the Third Annual Global Earth Exchange, offered by Radical Joy for Hard Times (www.radicaljoyforhardtimes.org), a worldwide community of people founded on the belief that creating a sustainable, thriving future on Earth depends upon opening our hearts to the natural world in its brokenness as well as its splendor.
On June 23, 2012, as in previous years, people from all 7 continents will offer acts of beauty to wounded places, from Pigeon Square in Sarajevo to Tamblang Sacred Mountain in Bali to a nuclear power plant in North Carolina to our Laguna here in Sebastopol.
From radiation released into the Pacific Ocean by the Fukushima nuclear disaster, to industrial and agricultural run-off in local well water, increasingly the waters of our world are endangered by our way of life.
We will gather at the Laguna – damaged, degraded and now partially restored through the work of the Laguna de Santa Rosa Foundation (http://www.lagunadesantarosa.org) and others. (See brief history of the Laguna below.)
Bring a gift to the wounded waters closest to your heart or home - a song, poem, heartfelt words, or some small offering created from natural materials.
Walking Directions to the Ceremony site:
Start at the entrance to the wetlands preserve, at the South end of the Community Center parking lot. Walk a short distance down the trail to site #10, across from the playground.
Brief History of the Laguna
At one time the Laguna de Santa Rosa consisted of wide expanses of oak woodland, deep riparian forests, lakes, and freshwater wetlands, home to herds of elk and antelope, mountain lions, grizzly bears and tens of thousands of migratory birds. There were also 11 Pomo village sites on the Laguna.
Early European settlers cleared the woods to make way for farmlands. Wood from the oaks was burned to make charcoal that was sold in San Francisco. W i l d g a m e h u n t e r s made their fortunes killing the Laguna’s elk, antelope, deer and quail to supply San Franciso and the gold prospectors who poured into the state. Hunters supplied San Francisco's markets with ducks from the Laguna. In 1892, a single market hunter killed 6,200 ducks (more than the entire current population of waterfowl). The Great Egret was hunted close to extinction for its feathers, which were in great demand for lady’s hats. At that time, an ounce of egret feathers was worth twice as much as the price of gold.
For years the city of Sebastopol used the land for sewage treatment ponds and as a dumping ground. During the 1950s, 60s, and 70s residential development continued on land in and around the Laguna. By the mid-1960s, 75% of the riparian forests were destroyed. By 1990, 92% of the Laguna's riparian area was gone.
The Laguna de Santa Rosa Foundation was formed in 1989 and since that time has led a variety of restoration and educational projects, which continue to this day.