Join Headwaters in Building a Medicine Wheel Garden
February 3 & 4; February 10 & 11; February 24 & 25
A 2018 San Antonio Tricentennial Initiative
Headwaters invites the San Antonio community to contribute to building our Medicine Wheel garden.
Medicine Wheels are stone structures with cosmological and geographical significance, built by Native Americans across North America over the past 10,000 years to mark important celestial events. With input from local indigenous community members, the Headwaters Medicine Wheel is being installed to honor the 12,000 years of Native American cultural history at the head of the San Antonio River. The 80 foot in diameter limestone structure will be filled with native medicinal plants to educate the public on ethnobotany and the importance of providing sustenance for pollinators like the migratory Monarch butterfly.
You can help:
Saturday, February 3, 8:30am-11:30am
Saturday, February 3, 1:00-4:00pm
Sunday, February 4, 8:30am-11:30am
Sunday, February 4, 1:00-4:00pm
Saturday, February 10, 8:30am-11:30am
Saturday, February 10, 1:00-4:00pm
Sunday, February 11, 8:30am-11:30am
Sunday, February 11, 1:00-4:00pm
Saturday, February 24, 8:30am-11:30am
Saturday, February 24, 1:00-4:00pm
Sunday, February 25, 8:30am-11:30am
Sunday, February 25, 1:00-4:00pm
The Headwaters Medicine Wheel garden will be a place of reflection open to all people in San Antonio to learn, commune with nature, and find a sense of community while honoring the long history of people here before colonization. Volunteers will help to lay down limestone edging and walkways, spread dirt, and plant native medicinal and pollinating plants. Beneath the limestone, volunteers (guided by indigenous community members) will lay down loose tobacco to honor ancestral San Antonians. Volunteers under 14 must be accompanied by an adult. Wear close-toed shoes and outdoor clothing. Bring a reusable bottle and sunscreen. Snacks, gloves, and equipment provided.
Our garden is inspired by the White Shaman Panel, rock art painted by Coahuiltecan peoples over 4,000 years ago. The panel depicts the four fountain springs of Texas: Comal, San Marcos, Barton, and our own Blue Hole. Some scholars see the panel as a celestial and cosmological map, one that may have guided people long ago in their pilgrimages to the fountain springs. Based on archaeological, geological, and astronomical analysis, the rock art depicts 16 springs in Texas as a whole. Our medicine wheel will have 16 spokes radiating from a central meeting place, one pointing towards the Blue Hole so that the sunrise will be visible over the spoke on the winter solstice.
If you'd like to learn more, here are suggested readings.