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Saturday, June 16, 2012

National Aborigional Day at Sainte-Marie among the Hurons

Media Release

Celebrate Aboriginal Heritage at Sainte-Marie among the Hurons on National Aboriginal Day Thursday June 21 and the Aboriginal Festival Saturday and Sunday June 23-24.
First Nations culture will be celebrated at the Aboriginal Festival June 23-24 at Sainte-Marie among the Hurons.  The dynmaic family event will include Aboriginal singing, dancing, and drumming, lots of "hands-on" activities, and Aboriginal artisans and crafts.  The event is included as part of regular site admission.

National Aboriginal Day Thursday June 21 is a time for all Canadians to celebrate the cultures and contributions to Canada of First Nations, Inuit, and Métis peoples.  On this special day close to 1,200 school children and teachers are currently booked to attend the June 21 event at Sainte-Marie.  NEW features this year include the all-female Kwijike Métis Drumming Group and the Under One Sun Hand Drum Group.  The all-day program will also feature The Red Spirit Drum and Dance Group, the colourful Aztec Drumming Group, and the Neil Monague Hand Drumming Group.  Numerous “hands-on” activities reflecting Aboriginal culture will be available for school groups and visitors as they tour through the historic site.

The Aboriginal Festival on June 23 and 24 will continue the dynamic celebration of Aboriginal culture and offer numerous performances, activities and demonstrations.  The Kwijke Métis Drumming Group, the Under One Sun Hand Drum Group, and the Neil Monague Hand Drumming Group featured on June 21 will return, PLUS the Métis Summer Youth Cultural Program group as an exciting NEW feature. John Somosi, an Aboriginal singer and drummer from Hanover who encourages lots of hands-on drumming participation, will perform both days.  Back by popular demand will be the Tlacopan Aztec Dancers from Mexico City, performing fascinating ritual dances in their hand-made headdresses and beaded costumes.  Site activities will include making clay Okies (a Huron good luck charm), children’s heritage crafts, lacrosse demonstrations, and basket making. The impressive Survival in the Bush outdoor exhibit will greet visitors at the entrance to the historic site. The Métis Roots group will offer an interactive Métis craft, and additional Aboriginal artisans from across Ontario will be featured in the Sainte-Marie foyer.  Sainte-Marie’s Interpretive Staff will demonstrate historic fire-starting, 17th-century medicine, the locked waterway, and historic cooking.  Animated films on DVD will be shown in the Sainte-Marie foyer throughout the day, plus a wigwam display. 

National Aboriginal Day is on Thursday, June 21 and the Aboriginal Festival runs Saturday June 23 and Sunday June 24.  For further information please visit www.hhp.on.ca or call (705) 526-7838.

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