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Indigenous Culture, Heritage & Arts

Want to really know this part of the world? Learn the past and present of the First Nations, Métis and Inuit who've lived here thousands of years. Our Indigenous population are decendants from the first people to settle the North American plains. ● Sweet dreams: At Blackfoot Crossing Historical Park, camp in a tipi village and wake up to sunlight streaming in through the tipi holes. ● Heritage: Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump, now a UNESCO World Heritage Site, was used by Blackfoot hunters for at least 5,700 years. 
Tipi at Writing-on-Stone Visitor Centre

Tipi at Writing-on-Stone Provincial Park Visitor Centre

Aboriginal dance in Horsethief Canyon in the Canadian Badlands

Horsethief Canyon | Sean Thonson

Ready to Create with Jason Carter

Pow Wow Heritage Park Historical Village Calgary

Heritage Park Historical Village

Attractions

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Banff Indian Trading Post

Banff, Alberta

Located in World Famous Banff National Park, for over 100 years The Banff Indian Trading Post has been providing an outlet for First Nations crafts. Today they continue that tradition with a wide selection of Genuine Native Canadian Handicrafts, Sterling Silver Jewellery, Pottery, Moccasins, Mukluks, Hats, Blankets, T-Shirts, Leather Coats, Furs, Souvenirs and much more. From the local Stoney Nakoda to across Canada and North America, they have the best selection you will find.

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Historic Fort Normandeau

Red Deer, Alberta

Brand new exhibits and a reconstruction of the original Fort at Red Deer Crossing sets the stage to bring the early history of Red Deer to life. A heritage garden, poultry yard and teepees are set up for public enjoyment. Located west of Red Deer on the banks of the Red Deer River, Fort Normandeau sits at the site of the original Red Deer Crossing community. Before the railroad came to town, the Crossing was the best place to ford the river for miles around. Today through programs, hands-on activities, theatre and special events, the staff at the Fort Normandeau Interpretive Centre tell the stories of Red Deers three founding cultures: the Cree and Blackfoot people, the Metis Buffalo Hunters and the early Europeans who settled in the area. Open seasonally.

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Peace River Museum Archives and Mackenzie Centre

Peace River, Alberta
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The Peace River Museum features local explorer, fur trade and First Nations history, as well as the development of the Town of Peace River and Shaftesbury Trail. The Archives focuses on the North Peace Region and new exhibits are held three or four times a year.

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Holiday Packages

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Tours

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Métis Crossing Nature Preserve

Smoky Lake, Alberta

Explore the boreal forest along the North Saskatchewan River. The Métis Crossing Nature preserve is dedicated to preserving local flora and fauna along the river. Follow the marked interpretive trails to gain an understanding of the indigenous relationship with the land. The site is located on original Métis Riverlots from 1863 and contains unique natural features that will deepen your understanding of the Métis and the origins of Canada.

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Mahikan Trails

Canmore, Alberta

It’s an eye-opening experience when you take a walk in a mountain meadow or through the forest with Brenda Holder. She can point to and identify any plant, tree or bush and tell you how it can be used to make something crucial to survival – a fire cider for a flu or cold, a food source or a fire starter. Holder, operator and owner of Mahikan Trails, is following in the footsteps of her family lineage as a Cree guide of the Kwarakwante people of Jasper, Alberta where she grew up. Passing along her knowledge is part of her passion for supporting indigenous tourism for which she has won many distinctions. Holder offers several workshops, including her medicine walks, designed to educate people about how her ancestors survived off the land for millennia. Over two days in the hands-on workshop guests learn how to identify a variety of plants and learn how to make simple medicines.

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Jasper Tour Company

Jasper, Alberta
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For thousands of years, indigenous people have traversed through these mountains, creating routes used to trade between the different communities living on either side of the divide. The advent of the Fur Trade, saw them continue to do so, with many of them acting as guides to the European traders. Now, more than 200 years after the first Europeans were shown the way through the Rockies, the Jasper Tour Company continues to do the same. Following in the footsteps of those who came before, the Jasper Tour Company will take you out in search of experiences generally only found on the periphery of our daily lives. The Jasper Tour Company will treat you to a memorable pioneering experience that will help you build more of your own excellent history. The mountains provide the setting. They provide the guide. Without you, there can be no adventure.

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Events

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Ahomapénî; Relations and Rez Dogs Film Presentation

Banff, Alberta
2019-05-02 To 2019-05-02 MST

This “Dogumentary” explores relationships between people and dogs, and how culturally-bound expectations have affected people and pets on the Morley reserve. Presented by the Stoney Nakoda Audio Visual Club.

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Annual Peace River Pow Wow

Peace River, Alberta
2019-06-01 To 2019-06-02 MST

Join the Agricultural Society for their Annual Peace River Pow Wow! Enjoy 2 days fills with entertainment. View the table displays, aboriginal crafts, childrens activites, and hand games. A few highlights will include: Drum competition, dancers, drum groups, Jigging, & Fiddling contests, and so much more. Concessions and food vendors will be on site. Bring your lawn chairs. Free admission.

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Head Smashed In - National Indigenous Peoples Day

Fort Macleod, Alberta
2019-06-21 To 2019-06-21 MST

On National Indigenous People's Day, immerse yourself in the Plains Blackfoot way of life. Celebrate Indigenous Peoples' contributions to Canadian society. Experience the sound and spectacle of drumming and dancing. Listen to Blackfoot Elders tell stories about the plains buffalo culture. Try your hand at Atlatl throwing. Guided facility tours and indigenous food sampling are included.

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