Three hundred and thirty-mile prayer run reaches Salt Lake City
Warm Springs Alliance
It began on August 13. Davina Smith, a Diné mother of 4, set out from Bears Ears National Monument with a sacred medicine bundle to run to Utah’s state capitol to call attention to a range of issues of concern to the indigenous people of Utah and beyond. Momentum has been building steadily, as Davina has been joined by other runners and volunteers along the way. The runners will make several stops in the Salt Lake Valley this Monday, August 26, culminating in a prayerful gathering at the State Capitol at 6:00 pm.
The Run (officially the 10,000 Allies Indigenous Youth Solidarity Prayer Run) is intended to bring together people of all kinds who are concerned about the state of our world. “The medicine bundle is about healing, about standing together in unity,” said Smith.
Runners alongside Davina have included kids, youths and senior citizens. Few are experienced runners. As to why they’re running, they mention the shrinking of Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monuments, contamination from uranium mining, air pollution, the destruction of the Amazon rain forest, the Utah Inland Port and environmental justice. 9-year old Cory Russell said he was running “for those who can’t.”
The Run is being organized by the Salt Lake City Air Protectors with support from many groups, including Utah Diné Bikeyah, the Warm Springs Alliance, the Center for Biological Diversity and Utah Physicians for a Healthy Environment.
Members of the public are welcome to join runners at any of the stops listed below. The organizers are planning for a large gathering at the State Capitol at 6:00 pm. The gathering there will include prominent speakers from tribal communities. All are welcome to attend and bring an object that represents a cause or prayer.
The runners and supporters will enjoy dinner at Warm Springs Park after the ceremony, hosted by the Warm Springs Alliance.
You can visit or join the runners at the following places and times:
9:00 am Sandy- the Blue Lemon Restaurant, 11372 S. State St.
11:30 am Millcreek- 3900 S. State St. (northwest corner)
1:30 pm Salt Lake City option 1- Liberty Park (south entrance)
1:30 pm Salt Lake City option 2- Qaderi Sweetz N Spicez, 1785 S. State St.
5:00 pm Salt Lake City Washington Square Park (west side)
6:00 pm Gathering and ceremony- Utah State Capitol (south lawn)
For more info: http://www.warmspringsalliance.org/prayerrun