A small ceremony was held to declare Métis week in Golden. (Claire Palmer photo)

A small ceremony was held to declare Métis week in Golden. (Claire Palmer photo)

Métis week declared in Golden and Area A

It’s a week to celebrate Métis culture

The Métis Nation Columbia River Society has proclaimed the week of Nov. 15-21 “Métis Week” in Golden and Area A, a week dedicated to the recognition and celebration of Métis heritage and culture.

A ceremony was held on Tuesday, Nov. 16, to recognize the week and honour Métis culture in the area.

Nov. 16 is Louis Riel’s date of execution, who is heralded as a Métis activist and father of the Métis nation. Riel led the Red River Resistance and Northwest Rebellion, which resulted in Manitoba and eventually Saskatchewan joining confederation. He also fought for language rights for French.

The Métis society is seeking to raise awareness of the Métis in modern society, with a mandate to teach the history of Indigenous people with the local population and to try and move towards reconciliation, according to Davene Dunn of the society.

In Golden, Métis roots run deep, dating back two centuries. It was actually the Métis who originally settled Golden, with Baptiste Morigeau being the one who gave Golden it’s name.

The Métis haven’t always been a recognized society. That recognition didn’t come until 1987. The history of the Métis has long been fraught with erasure and discrimination, which Métis Week hopes to alleviate by raising awareness.

At the ceremony, the Métis Nation Columbia River Society president Travis Jobin spoke about the erasure of their culture, and how important it is to have people come out and enjoy in the culture.

Fiddle music was also played, with Caren Nagao teaching school children how to jig, a traditional dance of the Métis people.

Throughout the week, there will be several events throughout Golden:

On Tuesday, Nov. 16 until Wednesday, Nov. 17 – Louis Riel Day- there will be a free Metis/First Nation Exhibit at the GoldenMuseum from 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.

On Wednesday, Hanako Nagao will be hosting a watercolor painting Workshop at the YouthCentre from 7 – 8:30 p.m.

On Thursday, Nov. 18, there will be an online Bannock making workshop, Hosted by

Kokum Louise Jobin. This event will be limited to 20 people, and will be posted in the Métis societies Facebook group.

On Friday, Nov. 19, there will be an online Hudson Bay Mitten making workshop, hosted by Buffy Wackett. The event will have a limit of 15 participants and will have a small fee of $15 for kits that can be picked up at the Métis society office.

READ MORE: Columbia River Métis Society encouraging education in wake of Kamloops