I-Hos celebrates National Aboriginal Day

I-Hos Gallery is known for events celebrating the cultures and contributions of the First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples of Canada.

THE KUMUGWE DANCERS will be part of National Aboriginal Day this Friday at the I-Hos Gallery.

As an active community member, I-Hos Gallery is known for fun-filled events recognizing and celebrating the cultures and contributions of the First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples of Canada.

National Aboriginal Day 2013 will be one of I-Hos’ largest celebrations.

On June 21, from 3 to 7 p.m., bring the whole family to our original K’ómoks village site to enjoy a fun-filled day at the I-Hos Gallery. Savour some of our amazing traditional cuisine: wild sockeye salmon cooked on cedar sticks over an open fire, candied salmon, and barbecued buffalo burgers. The event would not be complete without tasty bannock cooked fresh on site and spread with berry jams.

Find unique and beautiful offerings in the artisan tents that surround I-Hos Gallery in front of our Big House. Meet some elders at their bake sale and crafts tables.

Our National Aboriginal Day celebration also offers free special events to feed the spirit and enrich all people:

• Empowering Our Spirit. Elder James Quatell shares his teaching in our band hall. Recognizing that we all have some inner strength to enhance, participants will select beads for the personal strengths they wish to address. The beads will then be bundled in a cloth and tied with red string.

In a moving ceremony, Quatell will offer inspiration and prayers over your bundle of beads. Your personal bundle stays with you or is placed in a safe space to help you achieve the power and strength you seek.

• Seven Sacred Teachings. To help guide us on our human journey, facilitators JoAnn Restoule and Suzanne Camp will reveal the Seven Sacred Teachings that are rooted in our ancestry and have been handed down through the generations.

They offer guidance in relevant ways to connect to personal peace, joy and harmony with all life forms. They share the practice of spiritual self-care through smudging — one of the gifts that we have been given as a people.

• Cultural Dance Groups Performances. A must see, this year we are pleased to announce that groups representing all three Aboriginal cultural areas of Vancouver Island will perform in our Big House:

Kwowutzun Tzinquwa, a Coast Salish dance group, performs at 3 p.m. Entering their fourth generation of singers and dancers, they share Cowichan songs and dances taught to them by their elders who have passed on.

Kumugwe Dancers, a Kwakwaka’wakw dance group from Comox, have been performing since 2001. Exhibiting pride in where they come from through the presentation of their traditional songs and dances, this group of dancers, drummers and singers is a favourite in their Comox Valley homeland.

Mowachaht/Muchalaht, a First Nation dance group from the Nu-chal-nulth People of the West Coast, they thrive on the proud sharing of their culture, songs and dance. Their group ranges from newborns to elders, and this will be their first year joining our event.

National Aboriginal Day is a day of sharing our unique and rich Northwest Coast culture, so join us in celebrating our heritage on June 21 from 3 – 7 p.m.

Gilakas’la — welcome and thank you!

— I-Hos Gallery

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