Tomorrow is National Indigenous Peoples Day and there are a few ways to mark the day in the Nanaimo area.
The day has been recognized by Canada since 1996, when it was announced by then Governor General Romeo LeBlanc. It was originally called National Aboriginal Day, until it was renamed in 2017. The government says the day is “a day for all Canadians to recognize and celebrate the unique heritage, diverse cultures, and outstanding contributions of First Nations, Inuit, and Metis peoples.”
Mid-Island Metis Nation will be hosting an event to celebrate at Maffeo Sutton Park from 5pm to 8pm.
The agenda starts with the opening ceremony and prayers, followed by speeches, and a summer sage. Performances will be from the nation’s fiddle group, the Hishuk’ish Tsawalk dance group, and popular Indigenous musician Ed Peekeekoot.
If you’re looking to get up and dance, they’ll also have jigging lessons for all ages.
The City of Nanaimo says you can also visit the feature exhibit at the Nanaimo Museum, which explores the life of Tsleil-Waututh Chief Dan George. George worked in television, movie, and stage productions to give media a better understanding of First Nations Peoples until his death in 1981.
Teacher at the Nanaimo Museum William A. White says there is also a local section of the exhibit which will, “provide local reflections from Snuneymuxw leaders of events from their own experience to go along with the exhibit and of course to highlight Snuneymuxw voices.”
It’s a travelling exhibit from the Museum of North Vancouver that just arrived on June 10. It’ll be at the museum until September 5th.