7 Truth and Reconciliation events happening in Calgary

Sep 29 2022, 8:09 pm

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.

Art display at Southcentre Mall

Calgary Artists

Keevin Rider – In the Spirit Real of our People/Southcentre Mall

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

Orange Shirt Walk

orange shirt day

Colouring It Forward Reconciliation Society/Albert Woo

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

City of Calgary Ceremony

Truth and Reconciliation

Chris Allan/Shutterstock

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, fiddlers, a hoop-dance exhibition, as well as messages from Elders, Mayor Jyoti Gondek, and more. The event will conclude with a free burger lunch for attendees. Everyone attending is strongly encouraged to wear orange.

When: 10 am
Where: Fort Calgary

Speak Up! at the National Music Centre

National Music Centre

What:  The National Music Centre (NMC) is adding five Indigenous trailblazers to its updated Speak Up! exhibition. It will now include Inuk artist, activist, and “O Siem” chart-topper Susan Aglukark; First Nations folk-rock duo Kashtin, known for blending Innu—an Indigenous language with as few as 13,000 speakers—into its music; néhiyaw rapper Eekwol, who uses her voice to express outrage about Canada’s residential school system and the crisis of missing and murdered Indigenous woman and girls; the late Ojibway folk pioneer Curtis ‘Shingoose’ Jonnie; the late Métis fiddler Andy DeJarlis; and 15 previously announced artists. The NMC will be open on Friday and free to the public so anyone is welcome to check out the exhibit.
When: 10 am to 5 pm
Where: National Music Centre

Every Child Matters Powwow at Scotiabank Saddledome

Scotiabank Saddledome

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

A musical poem and short film at Mount Royal

Montreal Truth Reconciliation

Government of Canada

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

University of Calgary Panel Discussion

University of Calgary return to campus

University of Calgary (Jeff Whyte/Shutterstock)

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
When: Noon

Peter KleinPeter Klein

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