Hivernant Metis Days celebrated over the long weekend

Big Valley attracted passengers from the Alberta Prairie and out-of-town visitors for the event.

Norgaare shows how some of the trapping systems work. PHOTO BY MOUSH SARA JOHN

Over the long weekend, Big Valley hosted the Hivernant Metis Days, a celebration of Metis culture and talents.

The village of Big Valley was busy with the trains coming in with passengers to take in the event.

President and one of the main organizers, Marlene Lanz said, “The turnout was great, far better than we expected, we feel that it was the best one ever, everything went along smoothly.”

With an event of such a scale, the organizers came from Big Valley, Olds, Calgary, Airdrie, Cremona, Donalda, Red Deer, Sylvan Lake and Byemoor.

”The village of Big Valley is very supportive, and we are welcomed with open arms and they really appreciate us being there,” Lanz added. “The vendors who display at the event, do so free of cost. We don’t charge vendors a set-up fee, but we are never too sure if the train people will have time to stop by and shop.”

Mayor Asaph Ken Johnson was thrilled that the place had such a “busyness about it.”

“Between the Metis Rendezvous and the trains over the weekend, and the motorbikes and the drive-in visitors, Big Valley was a busy place this long weekend,” Johnson said. “Several hundred people blessed us during those days. We look forward to seeing the Metis in our village this time of the year, and we are one of the “secrets” of Alberta that surprise and delight people when they find us.”

Lanz thanked all the members and non-members for making the event such a great success.

“I would really like to thank the members who live in Big Valley, and also the non-members who welcome us,” Lanz said. “I would also like to thank the members who come from all over the province, giving of themselves to make the event a success. And most importantly, thanks to the Alberta Prairie, the Big Valley museums and the village of Big Valley and all those who attended the event; you all contribute to our success.”

 

Visitors enjoy lunch on Saturday afternoon, Aug. 5 at Big Valley’s Community Hall. PHOTO BY MOUSH SARA JOHN

Dorothy Hourie speaks about her craft. Her stitching and knitting skills are next to none in the community. She said, “I make whatever moves me. All the patterns and designs you see are my own.” PHOTO BY MOUSH SARA JOHN

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