National Indigenous Peoples Day celebrates culture

Dancers Quentin Tootoosis (centre) and Helen Waditika (left) lead the grand entry during the 2018 National Indigenous Peoples Day celebrations at Kinsmen Park. (Jason Kerr/Daily Herald)

Thursday is dedicated to First Nations, Métis and Inuit cultures in what’s now known as National Indigenous Peoples Day.

The three unique groups fall under the classification of Indigenous peoples, and Prince Albert is celebrating them with a few cultural events—one takes place in Kinsmen Park hosted by the Indian and Métis Friendship Centre.

The event will feature ongoing entertainment by Indigenous artists such as square dancing, pow wow demonstrations and fiddling. Additionally, there will be several booths for beading, moccasin and sash making, bannock tasting, a children’s area and an elder’s tent.

St. Alban’s Cathedral is also having a ecumenical service for National Indigenous Peoples Day starting at 11 a.m. Following the service, the Northern Lights Casino is providing a light lunch.

National Indigenous Peoples Day is June 21 every year, which is the summer solstice.

In 1996, then Governor General Roméo LeBlanc declared June 21 as National Aboriginal Day. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced the government’s intention to rename it as National Indigenous Peoples Day in 2017.

Kinsmen Park schedule of events:

  • 9:00 a.m. – teepee raising and pipe ceremony
  • 2:00 p.m. – opening ceremonies
  • 3:00 – 8:00 p.m. – ongoing entertainment on the main stage
  • 5:00 p.m. – supper, free BBQ
  • 8:00 p.m. – closing ceremonies