TORONTO – The Aboriginal Leadership Partners, a group comprised of 14 key regional Aboriginal leaders, communities and organizations, today announced Toronto’s Aboriginal Pavilion, an Indigenous Arts, Culture and Sports Festival will take place over 19 days next July and August during the Toronto 2015 Pan Am and Parapan Am Games.
Community leaders, provincial representatives and organizers of the Toronto 2015 Pan Am and Parapan Am Games came together for the announcement at the Fort York Visitor Centre. The Aboriginal Pavilion will offer diverse performances, demonstrations, commissions and activities to celebrate and share the Indigenous cultures of the Americas at three locations across the city: the Native Canadian Centre of Toronto (NCCT), Garrison Commons (adjacent to Fort York) and Planet IndigenUs at Harbourfront Centre.
“One of the initial goals of the Aboriginal Leadership Partners was to offer gathering places to share the cultures, traditions and talents of Indigenous peoples from across the Americas”, says Larry Frost, Executive Director, NCCT, and member of the Aboriginal Leadership Partners, “and today’s announcement of the Pavilion is the transformation of what was merely an idea months ago, into reality. It’s exciting! And it’s a great example of what can be accomplished when we work together, inclusively, respectfully.”
“The Aboriginal Pavilion will elevate the experience of the Games,” said Michael Coteau, Ontario Minister Responsible for the 2015 Pan and Parapan American Games. “It will be a place where the Aboriginal community, Ontarians and visitors can come together to celebrate the Games and learn more about Aboriginal culture and achievements, an important part of Ontario’s history.”
“Aboriginal participation at all levels is a key component of the Games,” said Ontario Minister of Aboriginal Affairs David Zimmer. “And by working together, Ontario and the ALP can take full advantage of this fantastic opportunity to honour and celebrate the vibrant Aboriginal arts and culture of this region to Ontarians and visitors alike.”
“The Aboriginal Pavilion will be one of the largest Indigenous Festivals ever organized in this country” says Aboriginal Pavilion Executive Director, Cynthia Lickers-‐Sage “and the fact that it will take place at the same time as the Toronto 2015 Pan Am and Parapan Am Games is going to make it a celebration unlike anything the city has ever seen before. Get ready Toronto!”
The Aboriginal Leadership Partners is a collective of 14 different First Nations and Aboriginal services from across the GTA to drive planning, engagement and communication efforts between the TORONTO 2015 Pan Am / Parapan Am Games Organizing Committee and the Aboriginal community to deliver successful Games.