Trails of 1885
In 1885, the Metis and Cree rose up against the Dominion government over land and treaty rights. It was the last battle fought on Canadian soil, and to commemorate its 125th anniversary, festivals, celebrations and educational programs will take place at many of the pivotal battle sites in Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Alberta. The signature event is the Back to Batoche Festival in central Saskatchewan (July 18-25), an annual celebration of the culture, traditions and heritage of the Metis Nation in the exact area where the 1885 uprising culminated in the Battle of Batoche. Visitors enjoy traditional fiddling, Red River jig music, square dancing, bannock making, as well as rodeo, chuckwagon and chariot races.
Windscape Kite Festival (June 19-20)
For one weekend every year, a prairie field in Swift Current becomes a colourful scene ripped out of a children’s storybook, where all kinds of kites—some the size of houses—take to the skies. The event attracts about 40 national and international superstars from the kite world. Admission is free, and anyone is welcome to fly their kites, take in a kite-building workshop, or purchase their very own high-flyer from one of the many vendors. Free kite-flying lessons are also available.
Saskatchewan Roughriders’ 100th anniversary
Numerous activities are scheduled this summer to celebrate the green and white. A gallery dedicated to Rider fans and the team will be on display at the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame and Museum. Meanwhile, an exhibition entitled “Green is the Colour: the Art of Rider Pride” will appear at both the Dunlop and Mackenzie Art galleries in Regina, where fans will also have the chance to meet former players. At every home game there will be pre-game parties and events to honour the team, including a reunion of former cheerleaders in October when the Toronto Argonauts come to town.
Summer solstice festival d’été (June 18-20)
This three-day event in Gravelbourg, a bilingual community about 200 km west of Regina that is known for being a “touch of Europe on the Prairies,” celebrates the sun as it reaches the highest point in the sky. Highlights include music, theatre, literature and dance performances, along with an art exhibition and entertainment for children.
To see what Hayley Wickenheiser picks as her favourite spots, go to Where famous Canucks go to play
For more information on events and travel in Saskatchewan, see www.sasktourism.com