Indian Time - A Voice from the Eastern Door

Akwesasne Flood Relief Benefit Luncheon and Dance


Crosswinds Band performing at the Akwesasne Flood Relief Benefit Dance.

The community came together for a great cause on Friday March 16th, at the American Legion Post 1479. The Caring Hearts of Akwesasne organized the event to help and assist those affected by the recent flooding in the Hogansburg area. The event began with a benefit luncheon that began at 11:00am with all 200 dinners sold out in 45 minutes. Jonathan Lazore, Caring Hearts Volunteer, stated "We were able to sell 200 chicken dinners in 45 minutes. That's why I think we have the best community when it comes to stuff like this, everyone is willing to help out."

Later on the Flood Relief Benefit Dance began at 6:00 pm, with the admission being $5 for a single and $8 per couple. There was a lineup of 7 local bands volunteering their time for a great cause.

Jimmy McDonald, who plays in the Tribal Men band, stated "I was asked if I could find local talent to perform tonight. I was able to get 7 bands and 1 solo act to commit in one day."

The lineup for the benefit dance was Darry White (solo act), Katsi and the Biscuits, Crosswinds band, DJ "Lonewolf" White and the Spaghetti Corner Boys, The Tribal Men, the River Mohawks, Rez Pony and the Side Piece Blues Band. The Legion was packed with community members who came out to have a good time and support a great cause.

A Mohawk Auction was set up in the back, with items donated from organizations and community members, all the funds from the event will be split up in tiers, with the majority going to those that are still displaced from the flooding.

The Caring Hearts of Akwesasne members and volunteers gather for a group photo. (Front seated L to R) Katrina Oakes-Herne, Susan Lazore and Floanne Burns and (back row) Jonathan Lazore and Cheyanne Lazore.

Katrina Oakes, Caring Hearts Member, stated "We normally do dinners to fundraise for the community, but this time we are trying something different. Our group is open to anyone in the community. When we host an event, we post it online at Caring Hearts, and everyone lets us know what they can donate or if they can volunteer. We are beginning to get a reputation, so everyone knows they can trust that the money is going to where it is meant to go. If you look up our Facebook page, you can see our upcoming events."

The event was definitely a huge success, with the front Legion packed with people and the back packed with items for the Mohawk Auction. Some Organizations also donated money to the cause such as Mohawk Council of Akwesasne, East End Convenience and Tarbell Management Group. The event was able to raise a $6,449 Canadian and $6,204 American, for a total of $12,653.

To the Community members who helped to organize the event and volunteer their time, donate items and come out to support the cause, on behalf of everyone affected by the flooding, Niawen:kowa. Akwesasne definitely has some of the most generous and big-hearted people.


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