The Summer Solstice Indigenous Festival is held on June 21, which is a holiday in Canada—National Indigenous Peoples Day dedicated to Indigenous peoples’ culture and heritage. The date of the summer solstice has been sacred to many Indigenous communities and was recognized as a day of special significance.
The Summer Solstice Indigenous Festival gives an opportunity for all residents of Ottawa to celebrate the culture of the first inhabitants. A family-friendly arts festival draws over 40,000 visitors. A 6-day event is held at three venues. Opening ceremony and performance are held at the National Arts Centre. Next day Major’s Hill Park hosts APTN’s AB Day Live Concert. The Community Stage is reserved for local acts, while the Main Stage concert starts at 7 p.m.
Vincent Massey Park hosts Youth and Elders Gathering followed by the International Competition Pow Wow with Host Drum Black Bear as well as hundreds of drummers and dancers from all over Canada and USA.
The Reconciliation Pavilion at Vincent Massey Park hosts an exhibit dedicated to indigenous cultures, shared history, and future vision of “Reconciliation through Social Innovation.” Visitors can also learn about Algonquin territory that is now known as Ottawa.