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Speaker Series

Knowledge Sharing Series

Saturday, June 29, 2024

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Sheepa Papatsie

Maker and leader in the Toronto Inuit community.

9 am - 10 am

Sheepa Papatsie is originally from Pangnirtung, Nunavut. Her paternal grandmother was Cree, but Sheepa was taught and raised in Inuit culture and tradition.

 

Now based in the Greater Toronto Area, she is a maker and leader in the Toronto Inuit community, sharing her knowledge and stories

of Inuit.

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Christopher Stock

Christopher’s Interactive Indigenous Cultural Experiences offer an introduction to North America’s Indigenous People and their culture, creating a welcoming, inviting, engaging, positive experience and an opportunity to build a bridge toward active and sustaining Truth and Reconciliation

10 am - 11 am

Christopher Stock (Tehonatáhnhen-He is surrounded by the town) is a fifth-generation member of the Wáhta Mohawks, whose ancestors relocated from Kanehsatà:ke – Oka, Quebec, to Muskoka, Ontario, Canada, in 1881. He is a graduate of the Mohawk Immersion Adult Language Program at Wáhta Mohawk Territory, a graduate of Queen’s University’s Indigenous Teacher Education Program and holds a Primary/Junior Certification from the Ontario College of Teachers.
During his high school years, Christopher contributed to creating the first Native Studies course. He began his teaching career with the Wáhta Mohawks’ Kinderkids Program, a unique

 The outdoor education program for JK/SK students allowed him to develop his distinctive teaching style.
Christopher spent many years as a Second Language Teacher for Mohawk in grades 4-8 at Six Nations of the Grand River Territory. He has also participated in many presentations, performances and special events, including playing guitar, performing in Mohawk alongside his brother Jonathon as “THE WÁHTA BOYS,” participating in National Aboriginal Language Day and National Aboriginal Day celebrations, and performing at various schools and youth clubs.
In 2018, Christopher received a diagnosis of Aggressive Stage 4 Diffuse Large B-Cell Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. He underwent six chemotherapy treatments from August 28, 2018, to December 18, 2018, resulting in a confirmed non-active cancer status by January 18, 2019. However, he still battles the after-effects of cancer and its treatment, such as severe neuropathy (permanent nerve damage) in both legs.
These unique experiences and Christopher’s life-changing journey through cancer have highlighted what truly matters in life: time.

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Drew Hayden Taylor

Author/Play Write

Curve Lake First Nation

11 am - 12 pm

Drew Hayden Taylor is an award winning playwright, novelist, filmmaker and journalist.

 

Born and raised on the Curve Lake First Nation, he has done everything from performing stand-up comedy at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., to being the Artistic Director at Canada's leading Indigenous theatre company, Native Earth Performing Arts Inc.

 

Currently, APTN will air the third season of his award-winning television series GOING NATIVE, and his 35th book, an Indigenous horror novel titled COLD, which was released by McClelland & Stewart in January.

Sunday, June 30, 2024

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Christopher Stock

Christopher’s Interactive Indigenous Cultural Experiences offer an introduction to North America’s Indigenous People and their culture, creating a welcoming, inviting, engaging, positive experience and an opportunity to build a bridge toward active and sustaining Truth and Reconciliation

10 am - 11 am

Christopher Stock (Tehonatáhnhen-He is surrounded by the town) is a fifth-generation member of the Wáhta Mohawks, whose ancestors relocated from Kanehsatà:ke – Oka, Quebec, to Muskoka, Ontario, Canada, in 1881. He is a graduate of the Mohawk Immersion Adult Language Program at Wáhta Mohawk Territory, a graduate of Queen’s University’s Indigenous Teacher Education Program and holds a Primary/Junior Certification from the Ontario College of Teachers.
During his high school years, Christopher contributed to creating the first Native Studies course. He began his teaching career with the Wáhta Mohawks’ Kinderkids Program, a unique

 The outdoor education program for JK/SK students allowed him to develop his distinctive teaching style.
Christopher spent many years as a Second Language Teacher for Mohawk in grades 4-8 at Six Nations of the Grand River Territory. He has also participated in many presentations, performances and special events, including playing guitar, performing in Mohawk alongside his brother Jonathon as “THE WÁHTA BOYS,” participating in National Aboriginal Language Day and National Aboriginal Day celebrations, and performing at various schools and youth clubs.
In 2018, Christopher received a diagnosis of Aggressive Stage 4 Diffuse Large B-Cell Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. He underwent six chemotherapy treatments from August 28, 2018, to December 18, 2018, resulting in a confirmed non-active cancer status by January 18, 2019. However, he still battles the after-effects of cancer and its treatment, such as severe neuropathy (permanent nerve damage) in both legs.
These unique experiences and Christopher’s life-changing journey through cancer have highlighted what truly matters in life: time.

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Kayl Commanda

Anishinaabe Two-Spirit woman from Nipissing First Nation, of the Marten clan.

10 am - 11 am

Kayl completed a Bachelor of Indigenous studies and history from Trent University in 2022, going on to complete a degree in Indigenous Education and becoming a certified secondary teacher with experience in Indigenous pedagogy.

 

Kayl holds teachables in FNMI studies and history. She began as a volunteer Firekeeper in 2019, working her way up to the leadership position of Head Firekeeper in 2021, and maintaining that role until finishing her degree in April 2024.

 

Kayl helped to grow and maintain a traditional medicine garden at Trent University, sharing stories and teachings with campus staff to grow appreciation of Native species and Indigenous knowledge.

 

Through her work as a Firekeeper, Kayl has traveled across Ontario providing traditional on the land teachings to youth and adults alike, becoming a strong advocate for Two-Spirit spaces.

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Sheepa Papatsie

Maker and leader in the Toronto Inuit community.

11 am - 12 pm

Sheepa Papatsie is originally from Pangnirtung, Nunavut. Her paternal grandmother was Cree, but Sheepa was taught and raised in Inuit culture and tradition.

 

Now based in the Greater Toronto Area, she is a maker and leader in the Toronto Inuit community, sharing her knowledge and stories

of Inuit.

Our Mission

Our Mission

At 'See Muskoka Through Our Eyes,' our mission is to honour and preserve the traditions of the Indigenous communities through the Annual Traditional Powwow. We aim to create a welcoming space for cultural exchange and mutual respect.

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Our Vision

Our vision is to foster understanding, unity, and appreciation for Indigenous traditions and values. Through the Annual Traditional Powwow, we aspire to build bridges across communities and generations.

Event Details

2024 marks Muskoka's first Powwow. We are excited to invite everyone to join, learn, and experience the beauty of a Powwow. In Honour of “The One Dish with One Spoon Treaty" and Truth and Reconciliation, we invite you to attend the first annual Traditional Powwow in Muskoka! 

"See Muskoka Through Our Eyes" will be a historic event taking place at Annie Williams Park in Bracebridge. This area is, and always has been, a mystical, magical and powerful place that will showcase what Muskoka has to offer and bring all of us together in the spirit of reconciliation to celebrate the Summer Solstice, Indigenous Awareness Month, and Canada Day in peace and harmony.

 

We can make a difference together by fostering a positive journey towards Truth and Reconciliation. This event allows Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities to interact and learn positively about each other.

On-site activities/programming:

  • Traditional Powwow: traditional dancing, singing, and...

    • Host Drum: White Tail Cree

    • Co-Host Drum: Chippewa Travellers 

    • ​Spirit Wolf Singers

    • Shawna Family Drum

    • Indian Road Drum

  • Authentic Indigenous craft vendors

  • Traditional Indigenous food vendors

  • Cultural Teachings will include traditional ways of knowing and being

  • Other booths will highlight area supports and other cultural groups in our community

  • Traditional Fire Keepers keeping the fire for the full event

  • Grand Entry Saturday, June 29th and Sunday, June 30th, at 12:30, followed by intertribal dances

  • Audience participation - lots of opportunities for participation throughout the weekend

  • And more...

What better way to unify and reaffirm all of our relationships with Nature and each other.

 

“See Muskoka Through Our Eyes.” Annual Powwow is an opportunity to focus on compassion, love, honour, respect, thanks and gratitude for the past and present. Without this truth, there can never be true reconciliation. We hope you will join us in this learning and celebration.

Any non invited drums will get a blanket dance drum split

Join us in celebrating the rich cultural heritage and traditions of the Annual Traditional Powwow. Together, we can embrace diversity and create a meaningful impact in our community.

Be a part of history

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