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Final Draft Spirit of Edmonton

Final Draft Spirit of Edmonton

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Published by Elise Stolte
Report presented to Edmonton City Council Dec. 12, 2011 by Lewis Cardinal on several projects meant to increase the visibility of aboriginal culture in Edmonton.
Report presented to Edmonton City Council Dec. 12, 2011 by Lewis Cardinal on several projects meant to increase the visibility of aboriginal culture in Edmonton.

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Categories:Topics, Art & Design
Published by: Elise Stolte on Feb 28, 2012
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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November 2011
Spirit of Edmonton
Reclaiming Monto, a CollectiveVision Connecting the River andthe People
The remembrance of spirit through celebration and ceremonyis still alive in our river valley. It is the same spirit that firstcalled our people to the area long ago. The Indigenous historywill bring together all peoples of Edmonton in a profound way.For many Edmontonians the spirit of this place can still beexperienced in tangible ways. Unknown to most of us, aroundevery corner and in every gulley a natural and cultural historyis alive and waiting.The ideas presented in this document bring together spirit,history, education, culture and art for Indigenous peoples andfor all Edmontonians. Connecting together special locationsand sites along the river valley that span time and history in away that reconnects us to the spirit of this place.Edmonton was born at Rossdale Flats as a gathering place forIndigenous peoples 8,000 to 10,000 years before Europeans
came. It was a “pehonan”, or waiting place, that was a centre
of trade, celebration, and ceremony. The flats are rich inhistory, stories, and spirit waiting to be brought into being.Sacred is the only word to describe the full depth of this land.
“Monto” has always been within the name Edmonton. Montois the Cree word for Creator’s spirit or the great mystery.
Edmonton is full of spirit throughout all our communities. Infact we can say that Edmonton has spirit in name and place.People from all over the world move here and experience thisspecial place, but never know the history or why it is sospecial. You feel it inside and are drawn here.So, how do we reclaim our monto in Edmonton?This proposal connects the stories, spirit, art, culture, andhistory for Edmonton and all its peoples. By connecting allthese planned and future sites along our river valley we aretaking the necessary action to ensure a reconnection to
Edmonton’s monto for generations to come. An awakened
spirit holds the potential for greatness.
Reclaiming the Spirit: Monto
Swift Moving Water
Imagine a journey, or a path,which you could travel down andconnect you, your children, andyour family, to the history ofEdmonton? Imagine if you couldtruly experience the culture andart of our great City through theeyes of our elders.The peace and harmony thatbrought tranquility here is whyEdmonton is a place of gatheringin friendship and trust.Let us celebrate our picturesqueriver valley by connecting ourhistory with these unique placesalong its wandering path.May we open our eyes andexperience what it was, what it is,and what it will be.What an incredible moment thatwould be.
Telling the Story
The Indigenous Peoples’ E
xperience will enhance
Fort Edmonton’s story. It will integrate with all
aspects of the park and bring together the completehistory of Edmonton.Walking trails, lined with camps, will provide aninteractive story of the Indigenous people. Anamphitheater will showcase stories of the pehonanwith exhibition space projecting sky and trees tobring a true feeling of being outside. Making it ausable space through out the year.The camp space will give in depth information suchas creation myths, oral and written traditions, andfamily. A final show about migration, with a storyteller, leads guests to an arena show. The show isabout the spiritual and ceremonial elements ofpehonan and Indigenous cultural traditions.A retail shop, a traditionally set restaurant, andclassrooms will contribute to the entire experience.
Project Time Frame and Investment
 The Indigenous Peoples Experience is expected tobe completed by 2017. Total cost for this project isestimated at $35 million.
Indigenous Peoples’ Exper 
Fort Edmonton Park
Spirit of pehonan
The Indigenous Peoples
Experiencewill connect Edmontonians historiesand cultures by offering fun,respectful, engaging, and authenticexperiences.U
ltimately, “The Spirit of pehonan”,
from which our city was born, is whatwe want visitors to hold permanentlyin their hearts and memories. Thestrength of coming together withgood minds and good hearts to beopen and know one another throughthe seasons, the elements, sacredceremonies and everyday life. Thisgathering together in one place, as
one humanity; this is truly “The Spiritof pehonan.”
“pehonan”, the waiting place, will
celebrate Indigenous cultures andhistory, just before the forts arrivedhere. It will be a year-roundexperience to learn, share, andenjoy. A story long waiting to be told.

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