What are the lighted teepees off Interstate 90 near Turning Stone Casino in Verona, New York?

Nine illuminated tipis located on Oneida Indian Nation Land just prior to Exit 33 are a new cultural art installation called the Passage of Peace. They are designed to recognize the Western Tribal Nations and the challenge Native Americans face, especially during the coronavirus pandemic.

“We hope The Passage of Peace will bring attention to continued hardship taking place in many parts of Indian Country, while delivering a message of peace and remembrance with our neighboring communities here in Upstate New York,” said Ray Halbritter, Oneida Indian Nation Representative. “The tipi has become a universally recognized symbol of Native American identity. It also represents the traditions of Indigenous Nations in the Western U.S., many of which have experienced tremendous loss of life and suffering during the COVID-19 pandemic.”

The Impact of COVID-19 on Native Americans:

  • Native Americans are more than 5 times more likely to be hospitalized due to COVID-19
  • Coronavirus case rates were higher among American Indians and Alaskan Natives in 23 states and four times higher in New Mexico, Montana, Mississippi, Oregon, and Arizona
  • One in every 475 Native Americans has died from COVID, compared to one in every 825 white Americans and one in 645 Black Americans
  • The Navajo Nation reported higher COVID-19 infection rates than any single state in the U.S. by mid-2020
  • The Passage of Peace will be on display from November 15 to the New Year.

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    The Passage of Peace is 7 illuminated teepees on Oneida Indian Nation Land to recognize the Western Tribal Nations and the challenge Native Americans face, during the coronavirus pandemic. They are on display near Exit 33 off I-90 through the New Year.

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