The Native Friendship Centre wanted to express the importance of National Indigenous Peoples Day even with COVID restrictions.
They did not have any plans to host an event, but since the national day is so important to them, they decided to make something work.
The pick-up-and-go barbecue will be their first event at the centre since December 17, 2019.
Although there are guidelines on events and large outdoor gatherings, Executive Director of the Lloydminster Native Friendship Centre, Bonnie Start, said while following these restrictions, they still hope to host a fun event.
“We didn’t want to let the day pass without an event even though we can’t have dancers and drum groups and all of our usual events. In past years we’ve had huge events here with kids activities and musical entertainers and First Nations dancers, Métis dancers,” said Start.
They usually have around 200 attendees coming and going at their annual celebration.
With COVID, they are still hoping to have around the same amount of people throughout the day or possibly more since people are looking forward to getting out of their homes.
National Indigenous People’s Day is actually on June 21, but since it’s also Father’s Day the Friendship Centre decided to celebrate on Friday instead.
Start noted the importance of the day dedicated to Indigenous people.
“It’s recognizing and building awareness about Indigenous people. That’s the basis of National Indigenous Peoples Day is to celebrate and honour our culture.”
To her personally, Start recognizes the history of her people.
“For me it’s just a day of reconnecting and remembering and appreciating our culture,” said Bonnie.
The barbecue includes pre-packaged Indian tacos, burgers, hot dogs, and freezies for kids for everyone to enjoy.