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National Indigenous Peoples Day celebration in Sudbury

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National Indigenous Peoples Day is a day to celebrate First Nations, Inuit and Metis culture and heritage.

Events to mark the day were held at Bell Park in Greater Sudbury on Friday.

The day is a vibrant reflection of Indigenous culture, something people here say is meant for everyone.

“I'm hoping that people will see that we have a rich culture,” said Kelly-Lee Assinewe, N'swakamok Native Friendship Centre.

“We have, a great community who work together, help each other. Everyone is like family and it doesn't matter who you are. We welcome you in.”

The powwow, hosted annually by the N'swakamok Native Friendship centre at Bell Park, saw hundreds of people participating and taking in dances, music and vendors.

One of the highlights is the exquisite Indigenous regalia.

“I'm wearing the men's woodland,” said dancer Brayden Peltier.

“It is one of the traditional outfits of the Anishinaabe people and my hat is made of an otter. And I also don eagle feathers when I wear it and my hair ties, they are of a mink, and I also have this necklace that is made out of bear claws -- and I have my eagle fan with me and my war club.”

National Aboriginal Day began in 1996 and was renamed in 2017.

“The beautiful thing about time is when we are trying to educate and inform people and grow as a society,” said head veteran Will Morin.

“It's a long game. We have to plant seeds. We have to bring in our youth, we have to bring in and include our children, and we need to recognize that anything of any change that is bringing everyone together is a change that benefits everyone.”

The event also coincides with National Indigenous History Month, which is recognized in June. 

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