August 20 2019 Back to News

Snuneymuxw First Nation to Host 2020 Tribal Journeys

Snuneymuxw First Nation to Host 2020 Tribal Journeys

Nations from all across the Pacific Northwest will "Paddle to Snuneymuxw" in Summer 2020 as part of the annual Tribal Journeys.

We can't wait! The annual Tribal Journeys are an incredible event that connects us to our traditional roots in the Salish world. The Coast Salish peoples have traversed the strait together in our canoes for millennia, it is as natural as the passing of the seasons and the movement of the tides. All of us coming together in this journey creates a powerful connection to each of our territories, to the sea that has always supported and sustained us, and to each other as Xwulmuxw mustimuxw. It creates a path for our peoples, young and old, to reconnect with our ancestors and the teachings they have left for us in the modern world; which is critical for re-contextualizing space here on the coast as it is meant to be, first and foremost: Our home as indigenous peoples. Snuneymuxw is honoured to welcome our guests and we look forward to sharing the wealth of our territory with you.

Snuneymuxw First Nation to Host Tribal Journeys 2020 - Nanaimo News Bulletin

Snuneymuxw First Nation to host Tribal Journeys 2020

Paddling event will culminate in gathering in Nanaimo area July 27-Aug. 1

Snuneymuxw First Nation territory will be the destination for people taking part in Tribal Journeys 2020.

The annual event, which sees indigenous people from B.C. and Washington state embarking on a journey in traditional canoes, recently concluded in Lummi Nation in Washington. Next year, the final stop is the Nanaimo area from July 27-Aug. 1.

“Each community will do what they call protocol,” said Snuneymuxw Chief Mike Wyse. “So they’ll be at our long house up in Cedar; each community will have their slotted time where they’ll come in and celebrate their songs and share their journey with the rest of the tribes from up and down the coast, so it’s quite a big event.”

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Chris Beaton, Nanaimo Aboriginal Centre executive director, said the centre is “thrilled” the event will take place locally.

“Nanaimo Aboriginal Centre has participated in Tribal Journeys for the past four years and we know how important it is for our youth and our families and to see it for the first time in the 30-year history of Tribal Journeys coming to Nanaimo. We’re incredibly proud and want to do everything we can to support Snuneymuxw First Nation in hosting it next 2019,” Beaton said.

While nearby First Nations have hosted in the past, Wyse says 2020 will be the first where his nation hosts.

“It’s been in Cowichan a few years back, Campbell River … a couple of years ago, but it’s the first time for Snuneymuxw,” said Wyse. “We’ve hosted overnight when they’ve passed through, so there’s only maybe a dozen canoes, but next year we’ll have 100-plus canoes.”