The Night Turtle Dance

It’s almost time for The Night Turtle Dance!!!  Come!  Join us!  Bring the Elders and bring the children – a celebration for us all!

Grandmother Turtle is swimming toward us.  We are preparing, moving towards the meadow to met her and with joy-full hearts.

My friend and teacher Sarah received a vision on her hanblechya, vision quest, a number of years ago that was to become The Night Turtle Dance.  This year will be the sixth time this ceremony will be danced.  Each year it grows in such a beautiful way.  A committed core group sees to the organization, to the vision itself and the land where we will gather and dance in the August full moon.  In addition, the group is expanding to include many others who are drawn like Luna moths to the moon’s light – transfixed, thus transformed, who carry this dance within and out throughout the year.

An altar is lovingly etched into a meadow containing seven altars – a community drum with beautiful singers and songs.  It is indeed joy full!  Simple and intricate patterns danced into the earth with great full intention – both joyful and grateful.


This ceremony is a dance of gratitude – a prayer of giving back to our Mother Earth for all the gifts she gives.  Our every need is met by her.  This dance is to honor that generosity giving back with our hearts and prayers.   I always make my dance a commitment to hold the turtles back, which means I stay on the altar all night in silent prayer between each of the seven rounds.  This is personally fulfilling and meaningful and while I am willing to continue this commitment, there is always a time I am drawn towards the voices and laughter of those who make their commitment in a different way.  Their joyful sounds by the community fire so sweet.  Maybe this year, my fourth year dancing, I will join them and do a little laughing myself.  Maybe not – I like the silence, how it anchors the ceremony in such a good way – how it anchors me.

The vision is made manifest here in the Pacific Northwest, soon it will be danced in Europe and there is a dream coming true to share it in Mexico with indigenous peoples wishing to dance in this way.  Consider helping to bring this ceremony to Mexico.  Consider joining us August 9-11 in the meadow of Camp Niwana, you’ll be glad you did.

“…Oh and we danced  by the light of the silvery moon…”

Aho Mitakuye Oyasin!




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