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The Metis sash on the statue of Louis Riel at UM

The Métis sash on the statue of Louis Riel at UM.

Celebrating Louis Riel Day: Our Way

Sharing how we can all participate in our own ways to honour Louis Riel and celebrate the Métis Nation

February 11, 2022 — 

On Monday, Feb. 21, we honour the Founding Father of Manitoba and celebrate Louis Riel Day. It’s important for all Manitobans to learn about the history of where we live and the role that Louis Riel and the Métis Nation had in bringing our province into Confederation.

There will be lots of ways to celebrate. At UM, in lieu of the annual celebration held at Migizii Agamik – Bald Eagle Lodge, everyone is encouraged to participate in the #MétisTakeover on social media on Friday, Feb. 18.

How can you participate? On Feb. 18, on your Instagram or Facebook, share through photo(s) or video how you would like to honour and celebrate Louis Riel Day.

  • Strike a pose with your Métis sash
  • Show us your best jig
  • Serenade us with a beautiful Métis tune
  • Read us a poem
  • Tell us a story about your ancestors
  • Tell us how proud you are to be Métis
  • Share anything you want to honour Louis Riel and his legacy

Make sure to tag @UMIndigenous and use the hashtag #MétisTakeover on Facebook and Instagram.

“As a Métis person, I find it exciting to see the Métis community, especially young leaders on campus, celebrating what it is to be Métis and raising awareness of our shared history. We take this day to learn more about the contributions of Louis Riel and the Métis to this province. I encourage the UM community to reflect on this day and celebrate with us.” – Dr. Catherine Cook

“UM is committed to honouring Métis history, and Louis Riel Day is an important opportunity to honour that commitment,” says Michael Benarroch, UM President and Vice-Chancellor. “Louis Riel was a true visionary who dreamt of a province that embraced all cultures, and it is important for all Manitobans to know the history of our province and recognize Riel’s leadership. I encourage our community to pursue opportunities to learn more about Riel and the Red River Métis Nation.” – Michael Benarroch, President and Vice-Chancellor

Consider checking out some of the upcoming events, organized by the Manitoba Métis Federation (MMF), Métis locals and others:

  • Saturdays from Feb. 12-26 – 7 – 8 p.m. – Michif Storytelling Series hosted by the Gabriel Dumont Local 11. Register for the Zoom session.
  • Saturday, Feb. 19 – 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. & Sunday, Feb. 20 – 9 a.m. – 12 p.m. – A virtual Red River Métis Youth Conference on Identity hosted by the MMF. The conference is open to all Red River Métis Youth between 15 to 29 years old. Register online.
  • Monday, Feb. 21, 1 – 4 p.m.Louis Riel Family Day at FortWhyte Alive, hosted by the Winnipeg Regional Youth Advisory Committee, will have hot chocolate and tea, a bonfire hot dog roast, voyageur games, a scavenger hunt and more! Must register by Feb. 17. Limited spots available.
  • Monday, Feb. 21, 1 – 3 p.m. – The Two-Spirit Local is hosting a Beginner Michif Language workshop with Laura Forsythe for Two-Spirit Local members. Deadline to register is 12 p.m. on Feb. 18.
  • Monday, Feb. 21, 1 – 6 p.m. – The Northwest Métis Council Inc. is hosting a virtual concert series to celebrate Louis Riel Day and will have fireworks in Dauphin, MB.
  • Monday, Feb. 21, 11 a.m. – 4 p.m. – The Richer Métis Local is hosting a Louis Riel Day Celebration at the Dawson Trail Park in Richer, MB that includes traditional dance, song, fiddle music, ice skating, hayrides and a nice hot meal with stew and galette.

Want to research your Métis family history? Check out the Métis Nation Historical Database.

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