Concerts, crafts, food, ceremonies planned across Manitoba for National Indigenous Peoples Day | The Canadian News

Manitoba is home to Cree, Ojibway, Oji-Cree, Dakota and Dene, Métis and Inuit, and June 21 is when everyone is urged to celebrate and learn about those who were first in this province.

National Indigenous Peoples Day will take place as the summer solstice arrives, bringing the longest day of the year — and the opportunity to look thousands of years back on our history.

CBC TV and CBC Gem will broadcast and stream a selection of Indigenous-led documentaries, films and series throughout the day and late night on June 21.

There are also a number of local ways to get out in the community and experience the rich diversity of First Nations, Métis and Inuit people for yourself.


Head to the Exchange District for free family-friendly events, including live music from 20 Indigenous acts, food vendors and crafts by Indigenous artisans.

Presented by Indigenous Music, the Nistumee Neepinee Keesikow Concert takes place at the Cube. Nistumee Neepinee Keesikow means first day of summer in the Swampy Cree dialect.

The full lineup and schedule for the concert series can be seen on the Indigenous Music website or the link above.

The University of Manitoba’s Rady Faculty of Health Sciences is hosting an event at the Mashkiki Gitigaan — Medicine Garden near 745 Bannatyne Ave.

It begins at 7 a.m. with lighting a sacred fire and then a 7:30 a.m. pipe ceremony. The formal program begins at 10:30 a.m. with an opening prayer and honour song.

Summer solstice and elder teachings will take place, along with remarks from various dignitaries, including Dr. Marcia Anderson, vice-dean of Indigenous health, social justice and anti-racism.

The Winnipeg Art Gallery is hosting a concert from 7-11 p.m., featuring Fawn Wood, IVA, Uyaraqk, 2oolman and Leonard Sumner, along with a special surprise guest.

The performances are happening at different times throughout the WAG-Qaumajuq, including in the the skylight and Ilipvik galleries, as well as on the rooftop.

Attendance is limited and on a first-come, first-served basis. Regular admission rates apply to all but Indigenous people, who always have free entrance to the galleries.


A full day of entertainment and displays is on tap with a teepee village, cultural and heritage displays, an Indigenous crafters’ market, on-stage entertainment, including powwow demonstrations, square dancers, traditional drummers, throat singers and Métis entertainers, and food.

A kids zone features traditional and modern games and crafts.


Celebrate traditional dancing, songs, art and food at MacLean Park.

The MKO National Indigenous Peoples Day planning committee has scheduled a “fun-filled day for the whole family” with opportunities to learn more about Indigenous people and their contributions to Canada.

Bannock is cooked outdoors on a stick, over an open flame.
Bannock will be served at many Indigenous Day events. (David Thurton/CBC)

A sunrise ceremony begins at 4:45 a.m., followed by a pancake and sausage breakfast at 9 a.m.

The day’s activities include a dunk tank, kids’ activities and a bouncy house, powwow demonstration, craft tables and teepees showcasing the cultural aspect of Indigenous people.

Free hotdogs will be served at noon.

Manitoba Métis Federation events

Live entertainment, artisans and demonstrations to celebrate Métis culture will be held from 6-9 p.m.

Admission is free and includes a bannock and stew supper.

An opening prayer at 3 p.m. kicks off a full slate of events, including a community feast with stew, bannock and cake.

The day includes square dancing and jigging, kids’ games, a silent auction and a 50-50 draw. It all wraps up with fireworks at dark.

Events include music, dancing, a silent auction and a free hamburger or hotdog lunch.

Activities start at 10 a.m. with greetings from dignitaries and wrap up at 4 p.m.

An afternoon of games and activities takes place from 1-4 p.m.

Activities include a horseshoe toss, slingshot accuracy, a three-legged race, a tug of war, bannock making, sash weaving, jigging, beading, fur and pelt displays, horse and wagon rides and more.

The day begins with a 5 a.m. sunrise ceremony, followed by a free pancake breakfast.

Live music, traditional dancing, bannock on a stick, a beading and fur showcase and $5 stew and bannock will be featured through the day.

Breakfast will be served from 9-11 a.m., followed by opening ceremonies from 11 a.m.-noon.

The rest of the day’s events run from 1-7 p.m., including a day full of music. Hotdogs and hamburgers will also be available.

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