A gathering of our villages and a celebration of our vision to future-proof
Black and Indigenous communities.
Wednesday, August 11, Thursday, August 12 &
Friday, August 13, 2021
11518 Webster Hill Road, Ava, NY 13309
Black Women's Blueprint has secured almost 300 acres of land in Ava, New York to build a community we are calling Restore Forward. Restore Forward will be a center for reconciliation, where the world can recover from grief and institutionalized violence. Restore Forward is a place for farming, learning, healing, mutuality, and restoration.
Restore Forward is located in the small town of Ava, in the north central part of Oneida County, New York. The population in Ava as of the 2010 census was 678. Ava was settled in 1798 on unceded lands that are the traditional territories of the Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) and later formed from Boonville on May 12, 1846. It was the second to last town to be created in the county.
We acknowledge that the property that will house Restore Forward is located on unceded lands that are the traditional territories of the Haudenosaunee (Iroquois). We honor the sacrifices and invaluable contributions made by the Indigenous culture bearers who came before us — especially the Haudensaunee women.
Our convening this August is a partnership with the North American Indigenous Center for Culture, Equity and Economic Empowerment. It is the formation of a powerful partnership in which we are breaking ground and beginning to plant the seeds of a collective vision for the future of Restore Forward. We are excited to share with you our plans and dreams for the property as well as introduce you to our neighbors and allies in the area with whom we are building rich partnerships. From sunrise to sunset, our day will be filled with walking the land, offering visuals of the future campus, sacred celebration and festivities, including sunrise ceremonies, an ongoing sacred fire, drumming circle, succulent sovereign foods and sharing ancestral stories.
We invite you to join us to learn more about our vision! RSVP HERE.
If you are not able to join us, please consider investing in Restore Forward so that together we lay the foundation for healing future generations.!
Travel and Accommodations
- Syracuse (SYR) is approximately a 1.5 hour drive to Boonville and Ava.
Albany (ALB) is approximately a 1.5 hour drive to Utica and a 2 hour drive to Boonville and Ava.
Nearest Amtrak train station is Utica (UCA). It is approximately a 30 minute drive from Utica Station to Boonville and Ava.
Drive from NYC
It is approximately a 4 ½ hour drive from midtown Manhattan to Boonville and Ava.
The following accommodations are located in the nearby city of Utica and are a 30 to 45 minute drive to Boonville and Ava. The prices are approximate before taxes and reflect a stay between August 11th and August 14th. A room block is in effect at the Hampton Inn.
201 Woods Park Dr, Clinton, NY 13323
Room Block -
King Bed - $149/night
Double Queen - $159/night
Call 315-793-1600 and ask for the
Restore Family block.
119 N Genesee St, Utica, NY 13502
Rates - $172/night
20 Weaver St, Utica, NY 13502
150 North Genesee St, Utica, NY 13502
Rates - $115~$150/night
175 N Genesee St Utica, NY 13502
Rates - $127~$157/night
take care of yourself
Every time we step onto the land, we are reminded that our healing is entangled with the healing of the earth and with each other across identities.
We are continuously astounded by the awesome beauty of the area. This vast land holds the resistance and testimonies of our ancestors as well as the endless canvases for us to paint our dreams onto - in the rolling rivers, lush greenery and beautiful sun-drenched skies.
As founding partners and allies, we are excited to have you join us to engage with the land from sunrise to sunset with sacred celebration and festivities, including drumming circles, fish on the grill, night fires, sunrise ceremonies and more.
Socially Distant, Spiritually Connected
As a number of COVID variants still remain we ask that you follow COVID-19 protocols in enclosed spaces. If you are unvaccinated, we ask that you wear a mask in all spaces.
We will have PPE on site for your use, but feel free to bring what makes you comfortable in terms of masks or hand sanitizers.
Bring light-colored, breathable and comfortable clothing options. We recommend layering with long sleeves and high socks for excursions.
Carry water or a canteen with you for foraging and journeys.
Wear comfortable, close-toed shoes (Crocs are a really good choice.)
We pray for sunny weather. Enjoy the sun and the wind on tug-hill. But take care to protect yourselves - bring your hat and sunscreen.
Wellness and Wholeness While on the Land
Stretch before going on walks and journeys
Ask our on site herbalist for the best wild foliage to sample while there.
Stay hydrated and bring snacks on long days. BWB will have snacks, just in case.
Let BWB staff or guides know if you have any allergies or specific needs.
We have a cadre of healers, health practitioners and medicine-makers who will be with us every step of the way.
Engaging with the Earth and Insects
The lands at Restore Forward and at our neighbors’ property, Fish Creek, are alive. There are natural habitats and animal sanctuaries surrounding the creek and the land. We encourage natural oils such as citronella, tea tree oil, and peppermint for your use.
Prepare for Joy
Bring your noisemakers, tambourines, brightest smile, comfortable shoes for walking and dancing, collective voice and open heart to the Restore Forward convening and celebration.
You are welcome to bring seeds, medicine, music, gifts, candles, flowers, or simply your best, brightest self. We welcome each of you with love, liberation, and healing.
Cell signal/Wi-fi is limited and/or unavailable in the area . Please be aware of this and be prepared.
Photo Consent Form
We will be capturing images and video during your visit. This form gives consent to use your likeness for publication across various channels. Please download, sign and email back to us, or bring with you to Ava.
AUGUST 11, 2021
GATHERING OUR MEDICINE
On this day we gather our medicines. Carry with or on you on your journey to Restore Forward, in your satchel, your luggage, or your medicine bag, the wisdom, tinctures, herbs, teas, oils, or proverbs of your people. You’ll be invited to give an offering on a collective altar or exchange with another member of the community. Bring medicine that is meaningful to you, and that you seek to offer back to the community or the earth during our time together.
Gathering Honey at the Reconciliation Bowl
Burning Resin on the Freedom Trail and other Sites of Memory
Gather for Cocktails
Altar Building with Libations