Lethbridge College, for the first time in its history, will be hosting Métis Celebration Day to recognize the culture, history and contributions of Métis people.
Each year on Nov. 16, Métis people across Canada pay tribute to the Right Honourable Louis Riel, a political leader who spent his life defending Métis rights. The celebration of culture and identity coincides with the anniversary of Riel’s execution by the Government of Canada in 1885. For the past several years, the Métis Nation of Alberta has also recognized Métis Week – the days surrounding Louis Riel Day.
“Bringing Métis Celebration Day to campus is one of several ways the college can demonstrate our commitment to being leaders in working toward truth and reconciliation,” says Dr. Brad Donaldson, Lethbridge College President and CEO. “Highlighting the culture and contributions of Métis people is also an important part of fostering a supportive and inclusive campus. I look forward to the celebration becoming a much-loved annual event.”
Métis Celebration Day at Lethbridge College will begin with a flag raising at 10 a.m. Wednesday, followed by opening remarks from college leadership and members of Indigenous Services in Centre Core.
An open house style event, with Métis artwork, crafts, music and dancing, will run until 1 p.m. in The Cave (CE1300). A light lunch of buffalo stew and bannock will be served over the noon hour. The inaugural celebration will wrap up with a Métis fiddling performance, and Brittany Lee, event organizer and Lethbridge College academic advisor – Indigenous focus, will lead a lesson in jigging and invite attendees to participate in a group dance.
“I’m excited to share Métis culture with the community,” says Lee. “We have several students attending Lethbridge College who identify as Métis and it’s important to highlight their culture, customs and traditions.”
Students and employees of Lethbridge College, as well as the broader southern Alberta community, are welcome to attend any, or all, of the day’s events.
For more information on Métis Celebration Day, visit lethbridgecollege.ca/MetisDay.