June is National Indigenous History Month, a time to reflect on and celebrate the contributions of First Nations, Inuit and Métis people. National Indigenous Peoples Day takes place this month on June 21 and there is also Aboriginal Awareness Week Calgary from June 21 to 26. During this month (and beyond), it’s important to take time to learn about, acknowledge and appreciate Indigenous culture and history.
June has been a heavy month for many Indigenous communities because of the recent news regarding residential schools, and has been focused on the missing children, the families and the survivors of these residential schools.
It is important to acknowledge and reflect on Indigenous culture and uplift Indigenous Peoples during this time. Here are some upcoming events where you can learn more about Indigenous culture and stories this month.
When: Multiple dates
The Calgary Public Library, which offers educational resources on Indigenous culture and history, is holding several virtual events for both adults and children over National Indigenous History Month. You can learn how to make Indigenous frybread on June 17, attend an online Treaty 7 puppet show on June 24 or learn more about tee-pee lodges during a virtual storytelling event with Elder Anthony Starlight on June 25. There will also be a Facebook live event on June 26 to showcase the new Indigenous Placemaking installations at four libraries.
When: June 21
The University of Calgary is celebrating National Indigenous Peoples Day with the latest edition of its Campfire Chats. This event runs from 1:30 p.m. to 3 p.m. and will feature stories from Traditional Knowledge Keepers including Lee Crowchild, Dr. Reg Crowshoe, Rose Crowshoe and Rod Hunter.
When: June 21
On National Indigenous Peoples Day, the Aboriginal Friendship Centre of Calgary is hosting a virtual teaching of Indigenous history, culture and issues. The event will be taught by Siksika Elder Adrian Wolfleg and will address several topics including the Blackfoot Confederacy, trade, treaties and post treaties, reservation life, residential schools, the Indian Act, MMIWG and the calling home ceremony. Register to attend by emailing email@example.com or calling 587-572-3376.
When: June 21
The Women’s Centre of Calgary’s online Zoom event for National Indigenous Peoples Day runs from 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. The event will first honour the 215 children whose remains were recently found at a Kamloops residential school. It will also honour Indigenous women with guests Chantal Chagnon, Flora Johnson, Tapisa Kilabuk and Mini Thni Dancers.
When: June 21 to 26
Aboriginal Awareness Week Calgary (AAWC) returns this year from June 21 to 26 with a theme of “Keeping the Circle Strong.” The Family Day event on June 26 features live performances by Indigenous artists like Wyatt C. Louis and Lindsay Crowshoe, which will be streamed on AAWC’s Youtube and Facebook channels.
When: June 25 to 26
The Aboriginal Awareness Week Artisan Market runs from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. over two days at Southcentre Mall. Held in the mall’s Centre Court, the market starts with an opening ceremony that will have a traditional dance performance and a prayer with Elder Dian EagleSpeaker. There will be 10 Indigenous vendors to shop from, as well as a resource centre where guests can learn more about Indigenous culture. There will also be an opportunity to donate to the Colouring It Forward Reconciliation Society and receive an orange ribbon to honour residential school children.
100 Anderson Rd. S.E., southcentremall.com
When: June 26
Taza, one of North America’s biggest First Nation development projects, is hosting the first Bridging Connections Outdoor Market on June 26. Held at the 7 Chiefs Sportsplex & Chief Jim Starlight Centre’s east lot from noon to 5 p.m., the market is a great opportunity to meet and shop from artists and small businesses from Tsuut’ina and other First Nations. If you want to learn more about Taza, check out its two upcoming Taza Talks on June 22 and 29 to mark its fifth anniversary.
Tsuut’ina Nation, 19 Bullhead Rd., togetherattaza.com