(Surrey, BC) The BC Mètis Federation continues to promote the importance of celebrating Mètis culture and identifying events to showcase Mètis culture to all people. This weekend provided another great way BC Mètis Federation was able to continue supporting Mètis cultural awareness as their priority. For the first time ever the BC Mètis Federation worked with one of their Statement of Cooperation communities, the Nova Métis Heritage Association, and put together a Mètis pavilion as part of the Fusion Festival in Surrey. The Fusion Festival is hosted by the City of Surrey and has several corporate and government partners. It is festival aimed at celebrating the multicultural society in Surrey, which is also home to one of the largest urban Mètis populations in Canada and the attendance was in the tens of thousands today alone. The Fusion Festival is Saturday July 21st and Sunday July 22nd from 11:00 AM – 10:00 PM with free attendance.
The BC Mètis Federation worked with Nova Mètis Heritage Association President Ken Fisher as well as the Michif Historical and Cultural Preservation Society to produce a world class Mètis cultural display. BC Mètis Federation cultural ambassador Beverley Lambert also worked with the Buttertown Jiggers and Silver Tip Swingers to present a Mètis dance performance as one the stage shows for the thousands in attendance. The highlight was the parade of nations and the BC Mètis Federation and Nova Mètis Heritage Association led the entire cultural parade of the various nations to the surprise of many.
BC Métis Federation President Henry stated, “Another great way to feel proud to be Mètis. I was proud to walk with my friends on the BC Mètis Federation including VP Daryl Piper and board member Beverley Lambert. I was also so proud to walk with Nova Mètis Heritage Association President Ken Fisher and so many other members of their community. This was the first time the Mètis had such representation and to see Ken and so many others holding our Mètis flags high in front of thousands was incredibility moving to me. The power and cultural pride we all felt as we led the entire parade was such an honour.”
BC Mètis Federation President Henry added, “Thank you to our team and in particular Beverley for all her hard work to support the Mètis pavilion and dance performance. Once again she and the Silver Trip Wingers and Buttertown Jiggers were the life of the party! I also want to sincerely thank Derrick Whiteskycloud for adding so much Mètis cultural content from the Michif society. Finally I thank Nova Mètis Heritage Association President Ken Fisher for the strong commitment and support to make this a success today. Once again he and his wife Joyce worked tirelessly to support a beautiful Mètis pavilion.”
BC Mètis Federation President Henry concluded, “Today the Mètis in Surrey were very proud and I was even more proud to be a part of the Mètis pavilion with the BC Mètis Federation. This event has been backed up by our commitments previous at Eurofest, Klahowya Village in Stanley Park, and coming next the Mètis cultural event in historic Kelly Lake. Thank you all for the hard work and this day will never be forgotten by many as we put the real priorities back for our people to once again be able to say they are indeed proud to be Mètis.
BC Métis Federation
Vancouver, BC V5R 5W2
You can follow BC Métis Federation President Keith Henry on twitter @keithhenryMetis