'I am Mi'kmaq': Cultural celebration held at Kouchibouguac National Park

Monday, 09 October 2017, 02:26:24 PM. A large celebration of Indigenous culture was held Saturday at Kouchibouguac National Park about 50 kilometres from Miramichi, New Brunswick.

A large celebration of Indigenous culture was held Saturday at Kouchibouguac National Park about 50 kilometres from Miramichi, New Brunswick.

Traditional singers, dancers and educators from New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and Quebec were all part of the celebration.

Organizer Marilyn Simon-Ingram, who works at the park, survived the residential school system and wants the celebration to be move towards sharing of history and reconciliation.

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Mi'kmaq culture was celebrated at Kouchibouguac National Park. (Radio-Canada)

"People have to gather together to learn who we are," she said. "It's time for people to share and know where we come from."

She said her culture's history has been one of persecution, confusion and suffered pain because of it.

"It doesn't matter what you call us, we're people," Simon-Ingram said. "I had a vision when I started working here for this land here, this space, for the Mawiomi, the place for everybody to be together."

Mawiomi is Mi' kmaq for gathering.

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A celebration of Mi'Kmaq culture and history was held at Kouchibouguac National Park. (Radio-Canada)

"I am Mi'kmaq, I was born Mi'kmaq and I am gonna die Mi'kmaq," she said. 

The celebration was a  big success, said Gé​raldine Arsenault, manager for Parks Canada New Brunswick.

"It is very important to be able to educate as many people as possible about Mi'kmaq culture and to give people the chance to meet this extremely rich culture," Arsenault said.

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Geraldine Arsenault, manager for Parks Canada New Brunswick, said it was a privilege for the park to hold the celebration. (Radio-Canada)

 

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