(Ethete, Wyo.) – Members of the Northern Arapaho Tribe from the Wind River Reservation will join runners from the Northern Cheyenne in Montana and the Cheyenne and Southern Arapaho from Oklahoma in the 19th annual Sand Creek Massacre Spiritual and Healing Run that begins this Thanksgiving Day.

“We have some 30 runners from Wind River signed  up,” said Gail Ridgely. “It’s a 250 mile route from the massacre site near Eads, Colo., to the Colorado State Capitol in Denver.”

Ridgely said the runners will be joined this year by students from Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois, outside of Chicago.

“The Native Student organization at Northwestern invited three of us from Wind River to talk about the massacre this past week,” Ridgely said. “Myself, Al Addison and Levi Curtis came from Wind River and Otto Braided Hair from the Northern Cheyenne in Montana all talked to the students, who will join us on the run. They are interested in illuminating the history that the founder of Northwestern, and also Denver University, was John Evans. He was also the Territorial Governor of Colorado and was instrumental in the massacre,” Ridgely said.

He noted the talks and participating in the spiritual and healing run are a learning experience for the Northwestern Students. “By memorializing the survivors and victims it is a true healing experience for everyone,” he said.

The massacre site is now a National Historical Landmark. According to historians, members of the U.S. Volunteers and Colorado militia attacked an Arapaho and Cheyenne village and slaughtered about 230 mostly women, children and elderly on November 29, 1864. Learn more about the massacre here.

The Sand Creek Massacre Trail signage is posted on highways in Colorado and Wyoming from Eads to Ethete, primarily following US Highway 26 in Wyoming.