Indigenous Peoples’ Day Celebration
October 7 @ 10:00 am - 5:00 pm
Join us Saturday, October 7 for our Indigenous Peoples’ Day Celebration! In honor of Indigenous Peoples’ Day, we are hosting our first full-day celebration with performances, storytellers, demonstrations and guest speakers. Save the date and stay tuned for more information on the day!
Background: Indigenous Peoples’ Day is a holiday that celebrates and raises awareness of the many cultures of Indigenous or Native American peoples’ all across the United States. In 1977, participants at the United Nations International Conference on Discrimination against Indigenous Populations in the Americas, proposed that Indigenous Peoples’ Day replace Columbus Day. Indigenous Peoples’ Day recognizes that Native people are the first inhabitants of the Americas, including the lands that later became the United States of America. It also urges Americans to rethink the history they learned as a child and help to understand the true history of the Americas.
Columbus Day was first celebrated in New York City in 1792 to mark the 300th anniversary of his arrival and to celebrate Italian American heritage, but it wasn’t until the Knights of Columbus pressured then-President FDR in 1937 that Oct. 12 actually became a national holiday. In 1972, then-President Richard Nixon changed the holiday to being the second Monday in October.
“On Monday, October 9, states, cities, towns, counties, community groups, churches, universities, schools, and other institutions will observe Indigenous Peoples’ Day or Native American Day with activities that raise awareness of the rich history, culture, and traditions of the Indigenous peoples of the Americas. They will do so thanks to Native people, their supporters, and others who have gathered for decades and continue to gather now at prayer vigils, powwows, symposiums, concerts, lectures, rallies, and classrooms to help America rethink American history.” – Dennis W. Zotigh (Kiowa/San Juan Pueblo/Santee Dakota Indian) is a member of the Kiowa Gourd Clan and San Juan Pueblo Winter Clan and a descendant of Sitting Bear and No Retreat, both principal war chiefs of the Kiowas. Dennis works as a writer and cultural specialist at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, D.C.