CHIMEDA 2019- A Reflection on Paddling Together

From JP Longboat

I joined the Chimeda Sunday morning, on the second day where we were to start out from Wakefield and paddle to Chelsea. Getting my kayak ready and coming into the moment with the river, who has been high and swift for most of the Spring, was beautiful.

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"'Chimeda – We are Paddling' is reconciliation in action."

This annual event is in the spirit of reconciliation. The event gathers Indigenous and Non-Indigenous peoples to travel the waterways of the area together “making a trip paddling our shared Gatineau River from Maniwaki to Chelsea.”

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A beautiful evening for a gathering!

Last week the Ottawa Riverkeepers hosted their Annual Gala event at 50 Sussex, the Royal Canadian Geographical building. The view was perfection, overlooking Kichi Sipi (Ottawa River) due west. Our Mother Earth treated us all to a stunning sunset.

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The Canoe Stories Festival and the Return of the Canoes Opening Event are activities and events highlighting expressions of culture and relationships to the Lands and Waters through the Indigenous art, architecture, and engineering of the vessels that move, carry, and connected us through our landscapes, earthly and spiritual. This festival highlights the telling of our stories, teachings and sharing the knowledge that comes though our First Nations ways and legacy within the diversity of our homelands and upon the waterways.

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About Circadia Indigena

Circadia Indigena is based in the National Capital Region (NCR) and comprised of professional and community artists from a variety of First Peoples communities who bring their artistic experience, expertise and knowledge to projects of a cultural, collaborative, and highly creative nature. This arts circle is a diverse and flexible group of Indigenous artists dedicated to developing, presenting, producing, animating and disseminating outstanding visual and performance art rooted in Aboriginal culture, languages, and relation to the land.

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About the Artistic Director

Organization founder and Artistic Director Jerry Longboat is Mohawk-Cayuga, Turtle clan, from Six Nations of the Grand River in Southern Ontario. Jerry has a BFA degree in Visual Arts from the University of Michigan and Ontario College of Art and has worked as a visual artist, graphic designer, actor, storyteller dancer and choreographer. He has performed, danced and collaborated with many professional performing companies across Canada.

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