CALGARY – The Calgary Stampede says its annual show of Indigenous tradition that goes again greater than 100 years will now not be known as “Indian Village.”

On Sunday, the ultimate day of this yr’s Stampede, officers introduced the village of greater than two dozen teepees might be renamed Elbow River Camp.

Stampede CEO Warren Connell stated in a information launch that the change was led by the teepee house owners with assist from the Stampede, noting the house owners made the ultimate choice.

Michael Meguinis, a spokesman for the house owners, stated the identify “Indian Village” by no means bothered him. However he stated it is now not accepted by some individuals, so it is time for a change.

His spouse, Violet, stated European guests have been usually confused or had bother with the outdated identify.

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“For the worldwide neighborhood — and that is a world occasion — I believe it makes individuals snug to say that we’re Indigenous and that is high-quality with us,” she stated.

The village has been a significant a part of the Calgary Stampede since its inception in 1912.

a close up of a sign© Supplied by thecanadianpress.com

Every of the 26 teepees on this yr’s camp has a novel design on the skin.

The teepee house owners are from Treaty 7 Nations of Kainai, Tsuut’ina, Stoney Nakoda, Siksika and Piikani. They reside inside their teepees through the Stampede and take turns opening them as much as the general public for viewing, whereas exhibiting household artifacts and answering questions on Indigenous tradition.

Lots of the house owners are descendents of the individuals who arrange the primary village, and some resisted altering the identify.

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The Stampede famous in its information launch that for lots of the members, the outdated identify honoured the connection of the teepee house owners with the Stampede and its founder, Man Weadick.

Michael and Violet Meguinis, who’re from Tsuut’ina First Nation southwest of Calgary, defined that when the Calgary Stampede began, the Indian Village was a approach for Indigenous individuals to depart their reserves. At the moment, First Nations individuals wanted permission from a authorities Indian agent to depart their territory.

A part of the explanation to alter the identify now, Michael Meguinis defined, was that the situation of the village moved two years in the past and teepee house owners had been debating new names. The checklist of solutions was whittled down to 2 and a vote was held Tuesday. The identify that misplaced was “Treaty 7 Camp.”

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The Calgary Stampede stated that in Dene, Stoney, and Blackfoot the phrase for Calgary refers back to the bend within the Elbow River — the elbow — and that for generations, when teepee-owning households got here to the Stampede, they’d level to their elbows.

“One in every of our pure legal guidelines is that change is a part of this world and we at all times say Mom Earth is at all times altering. So it is a change. It is a constructive change,” Violet Meguinis stated in regards to the new identify.

The Calgary Stampede stated the identify change is efficient instantly, and {that a} closing ceremony for the camp was to be held Sunday afternoon.

—By Rob Drinkwater in Edmonton

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