Indigenous Celebration Day
Left: Adrian LaChance, founder of Running Thunder Dancers, at St. Jerome’s School in Vermilion on May 10. Right: Emry John, who provided jingle dress teaching to elementary students at St. Jerome’s School on May 10. Photos Angela Mouly
St. Jerome’s School in Vermilion hosted an Indigenous Celebration Day on May 10. Creeland Dancers gave a jigging/square dance presentation, and the Poundmaker Singers gave a drum presentation. Throughout the day, students had the opportunity to participate in sessions such as drum teaching, bannock making, Cree language, Inuit games, artifacts, jingle dance, story-telling and tipi teachings. “It’s been a great day; the children had the opportunity to learn a lot and it has given us great exposure to many different aspects of indigenous culture,” said St. Jerome’s assistant principal, Allan MacMillan. Preston Gamble, from Beardy’s and Okemasis’ Cree Nation, explained that there are different styles of drum songs, and that by carrying on this information, he was able to educate his children. His children followed by singing a contemporary Cree song. Emery John, from Thunderchild First Nation, enjoyed teaching children about jingle dress styles and regalia. “I got them involved with my dance which was nice, and they all did so well,” said Emery John. At the end of the day presenters and audience members celebrated together by participating in a Round Dance. Overall everyone enjoyed the social activities and learning about Indigenous cultures. Emcee, Kevin John said, “We were very thankful and honoured to bring this presentation to the school that I graduated from in 1988. My family and the presenters were very impressed with the warm reception and the genuine interest and respect shown by St. Jerome’s staff and students. It’s been a remarkable day!”
Left: From left, Preason Gamble, Allan Bonaise, and Dawson Gamble at St. Jerome’s School in Vermilion.
Middle: A tipi set up at St. Jerome’s School on May 10.
Right: Students surround the Poundmaker Singers during a Round Dance on May 10.