The day of recognition came about after a series of calls for such a celebration. In 1982, the National Indian Brotherhood (now the Assembly of First Nations) called for the creation of a National Aboriginal Solidarity Day to be celebrated on June 21. Slightly more than a decade later in 1995, the Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples recommended that a National First Peoples Day be designated. Also in that same year, a national conference of Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people chaired by Elijah Harper, titled The Sacred Assembly, called for a national holiday to celebrate the contributions of Aboriginal peoples to Canada. The day was first celebrated in 1996, after it was proclaimed that year by then Governor General of Canada Romeo LeBlanc, to be celebrated on June 21st annually. National Aboriginal Day is now part of a series of Celebrate Canada days, beginning with National Aboriginal Day followed by St-Jean Baptiste Day on June 24th, Canadian Multiculturalism Day on June 27th, and concluding with Canada Day on July 1st
National Aboriginal Day was chosen on June 21st as it corresponds with the summer solstice, the longest day of the year. During the summer solstice, many Native American tribes have Sun Dances to represent rejuvenation and serves to bring the community together. Although the actual ceremony varied from tribe to tribe, many of the general rites were practiced. National Aboriginal Day is a day recognizing and celebrating the cultures and contributions of the First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples of Canada.
Saamis Aboriginal Employment celebrates National Aboriginal Day every year on June 21st (if it lands on a Saturday) or the first Saturday following June 21st in Kin Park (just off Allowance Avenue). Look for our Tepee Village. Our day of celebration includes a Powwow demonstration, Métis Jiggers and Aboriginal Folk Entertainers. Children’s activities on site may include face painting, bounce house, crafts. Local vendors are here to sell local Arts and crafts. We also have vendors selling Bannock and Indian Taco’s.
It is a FREE family event. Bring your lawn chairs and enjoy the colorful demonstrations