We Are All Treaty People

Members of Saskatoon's Chinese community visits Muskeg Lake

  • Published - 07/09/2018
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  • Posted By - Harry Lafond
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On Saturday, Sept. 1, Muskeg Lake Cree Nation hosted members of Saskatoon’s Chinese community.

The day started with early preparation for the hosts. They cooked turkeys, fish, moose, elk, bison in preparation for the visitors who began to arrive at 10:00 a.m.

By 11:00 a.m., the kihew Gym in Muskeg Lake was packed with over 300 visitors. Most did not speak any English, as many of these people have recently arrived into Saskatoon.  Everything was happening through Qin’s translation and we began the adventure of telling Muskeg Lake’s story through pictures, presentations, sharing of food and performance. They in turn shared some aspects of their culture.

First stop was the Roman Catholic church, they crowded into the pews to watch a power point presentation about Treaty 6 and its place in Muskeg Lake’s story. After Dolores Sand’s songs in Cree and Carol Lafond’s power point presentation, Harry Lafond introduced the visitors to sage, sweetgrass, teepee and symbols of governance.

After dinner in the gym, the performers  from the Chinese community shared the variety of dances with translated cultural information for the Muskeg Lake members in attendance. In turn, Jordan Daniels and Kate Boyer performed Métis fiddling and Métis dancing with time taken to teach a few jigging steps to the enthusiastic young Chinese.

The last performances were the grass, chicken, fancy, traditional dances from the Cree community. Cal Arcand introduced the dances and ended with another invitation for a quick lesson to the young visitors.

After some thank you presentations, the two communities joined together in a giant round dance.