OTTAWA — The Aboriginal Sport Circle was proud to announce that it will take part in the second annual Indigenous Culture Celebration Game last Saturday at the Canadian Tire Centre when the Ottawa Senators play the Columbus Blue Jackets.
Ken Thomas who is representing the The National Aboriginal Hockey Championships (NAHC) which was founded by the Aboriginal Sport Circle (ASC) took part in the pre-game puck drop ceremony along with other Indigenous representatives.
“We are honoured to take part in this celebration and congratulate the Ottawa Senators club for taking this initiative that recognizes the Indigenous peoples in this territory,” said ASC CEO Carey Calder.
“This is the second consecutive ceremony where our people are recognized and our Indigenous sports organizations represented and acknowledged. These are good steps towards reconciliation for all Canadians.”
The National Aboriginal Hockey Championships (NAHC) provides a forum for elite Bantam and Midget-aged Indigenous hockey players from across Canada showcasing the athletic abilities of athletes from across the country, while also fostering cultural unity and pride. The NAHC also serves as a focal point for grassroots and regional Aboriginal hockey development.
The annual hockey championship has been held annually since 2001 with The 2020 NAHC scheduled for May 9-16, 2020 in Regina, Saskatchewan.
Ottawa Senators fans that attended had the opportunity to participate in a smudging ceremony led by Elder Claudette Commanda during the first intermission at Gate 1.
Throughout the game, dancers from Akwesasne and Pikwakanagan showcased their craft to fans in attendance with performances at the top of the stairs in Gate 1 and in the concourse at sections 208-209. The second intermission featured a special performance by First Nations hoop dancer Theland Kicknosway.
Back singing the national anthem will be Mary Nahwegahbow from the Whitefish River First Nation who sang in English, French, and Anishinaabemowin.