The Calgary Stampede’s Indian Village has made the switch to a new name, and will now be known as Elbow River Camp.
The decision came from both the Tipi Owners and the Calgary Stampede, as the name “Indian Village” to describe a gathering of Indigenous tipis has been seen as outdated and unacceptable.
“The name Indian Village is no longer accepted by some people, so it is time for a change,” said Michael Meguinis, Calgary Stampede Tipi Owner (and Tipi Owner representative for the Village) in the release.
“The name hasn’t bothered me; it has history, it has always been a safe place for our families and our culture.”
The newly deemed Elbow River Camp has been an installation at the Stampede for 106 years, starting with its inception back in 1912. The camp promotes and preserves the relationship between families of the Treaty 7 Nations — Kainai, Tsuut’ina, Stoney Nakoda, Siksika and Piikani — and the Calgary Stampede.
“This initiative was led by the Tipi Owners with support from the Stampede, they made the final decision,” said Warren Connell, CEO of the Calgary Stampede, in the release.
“Elbow River Camp came through and had support from Tipi Owners from each nation and the Calgary Stampede supports their decision.”
According to the release, the Dene, Stoney, and Blackfoot word for Calgary actually refers to the bend in the Elbow River, and many tipi owning families see the camp as the elbow of the Elbow River.
The name change was made on July 15, the last day of the 2018 Calgary Stampede, at the Elbow River Camp’s closing ceremony.