Louis Riel celebrated at Kikinahk

Photo by Valerie G. Barnes Connell Jordan The Creeland Dancers perform during the 2022 Riel Day festivities at the Kikinahk Friendship Centre.
Photo by Valerie G. Barnes Connell Jordan
The Kikinahk Friendship Centred was filled to capacity for the annual Louis Riel Day celebrations.

Kikinahk Friendship Centred was filled to capacity for the annual Louis Riel Day celebrations after a three-year hiatus due to the COVID 19 Pandemic. On Wednesday, Nov. 16.
The celebrations, hosted by the Jim Brady Métis Local, and with MC Earl Cook.
The crowd enjoyed stew and bannock with blueberry cake supper, while a video telling of the life and times of Louis Riel played in the background.
Louis Riel led the Batoche Resistance in 1885 and was later tried and hung in Regina on Nov. 16, 1885. Riel, a Métis leader in the Red River settlement of Manitoba, was elected to Parliament and never able to take his seat because of opposition from the Canadian federal government under John A. MacDonald. He is, among his many accomplishments, recognized as the Father of Confederation in the Province of Manitoba.
Children enjoyed dancing to the lively fiddle music for which Métis culture is known.
Nancy Lafleur and Sue Carriere brought news of the Northern Saskatchewan Indigenous Teacher Education Program (NSITEP), Gabriel Dumont Institute (GDI), Métis Nation-Saskatchewan and Lac La Ronge Indian Band (LLRIB) initiative to train Indigenous teachers in the north. NSITEP held an Open House, Winter ARTS Storm, to support the program and their student breakfast program.
A class from Moses Ratt School in Sucker River also attended the event.
“Their teacher, Susan Sanderson, tells me they are just starting a class on Métis and what a better way to start out then by attending a Métis function. So, welcome to these students from Sucker River,” Cook said.
Modeste McKenzie, a regular at Riel Day, and the Creeland Dancers, fought a snowstorm travelling from Saskatoon arrived a little later than expected, to entertain. The crowd welcomed the dancers, who performed a number of dances.
McKenzie often taught jigging at Riel Day events at Kikinahk in the past.
They performed a variety of dances, with the enthusiastic appreciation of those present, to end the evening of celebration of Louis Riel and local Métis culture.