Friday is National Day for Truth and Reconciliation and while not everyone has the day off, there are many events to check out in Calgary.
The province is leaving the decision of whether or not to make the day a statutory holiday up to employers.
If you are one of the people who can get away for the day, here are seven events to check out to learn about the reconciliation process.
What: Colouring it Forward (CIF) Reconciliation Society is partnering with Southcentre Mall for the art installation that features the work of eight Indigenous artists in Calgary and it’s on right now! The installation will showcase art featuring personal experiences of Indigenous culture and the ongoing reconciliation process. Each piece will outline a number of reconciliACTIONS which are practical steps that people can take to help the reconciliation process.
When: 10 am to 8 pm
Where: Southcentre Mall
What: CIF Reconciliation Society and the Urban Society for Aboriginal Youth (USAY) are hosting the Pokaiks Commemorative Walk and IndigiTRAILS – Remembering Our Children event, also referred to as the Orange Shirt Day Walk. The event will take place at Prince’s Island Park on September 30. Both groups invite Calgarians to participate in the walk designed to stand in solidarity with survivors of the residential school system and honour victims. The walk follows a 30-minute route through Prince’s Island Park. There will be seven art installations created by Indigenous Youth along the route.
When: 9:30 am
Where: Prince’s Island Park
What: There will be a public ceremony at Fort Calgary on Friday at 10 am. The ceremony will begin with the Calgary Fire Department raising an orange banner at 10 am and opening remarks. Followed by a moment of silence at approximately 10:20 am to remember the thousands of children who were forced into residential schools and died while there. Morning events include inter-tribal dances, Metis jigging demonstration,
When: 10 am
Where: Fort Calgary
What: Siksika Health Services and the Calgary Hitmen present the Every Child Matters Traditional Powwow in the Scotiabank Saddledome. The powwow will open with a special greeting from the founder of Orange Shirt Day, Phyllis Webstad. The evening of dancing will include two feature dances consisting of an Orange Regalia Youth Dance (ages 7 to 12) and a special Honor Song for all residential school survivors in attendance.
When: Doors open at 6 pm; Event starts at 7 pm
What: Mount Royal University will have several events throughout the day. There will be a performance of The Day the Earth Cried based on a poem by Chief R. Stacey Laforme from his poetry book Living in the Tall Grass as well as Lament for the Lost Children. There will also be a showing of Little Moccasins which is about children honouring First Nations children that died and were buried in unmarked graves while attending the Dunbow residential school near Calgary from 1889 to 1924. The Cougars hockey team will also be wearing orange jerseys in their game against the University of Alberta.
When: 1:30 pm
Where: TransAlta Pavilion at Mount Royal
What: In partnership with Calgary Public Library, the University of Calgary’s Office of Indigenous Engagement is putting on a panel discussion with Cora Voyageur, Lee Crowchild, and Kathleen Mahone. The discussion will revisit the final report on Truth and Reconciliation in light of the discovery of unmarked graves on residential school sites, as well as the 2022 papal visit and the path forward. This panel will be moderated by Michael Hart, with an opening prayer by Reg Crowshoe and remarks from Sarah Meilleur.
Where: Rosza Centre, available to stream online