PHOTOS: Sasquatch Days about ‘being proud of being Sts’ailes’

Attendees get ready for the canoe races during the 2019 Sasquatch Days at Harrison Lake. (Grace Kennedy/The Observer)
The welcome procession for the 2019 Sasquatch Days heads down the Harrison Hot Springs waterfront, with members of Sts’ailes council and Harrison council in line. (Grace Kennedy/The Observer)
A child wearing a Sts’ailes Sasquatch mask walks in the procession with two Western interpretations of the Sasquatch. (Grace Kennedy/The Observer)
An attendee at Sasquatch Days raises his hands to the welcome procession moving along the Harrison Hot Springs waterfront. (Grace Kennedy/The Observer)
Three Sts’ailes interpretations of the Sasquatch stand in front of two western Sasquatches. (Grace Kennedy/The Observer)
Kids of all ages dance during the co-ed dance in the opening ceremonies for the 2019 Sasquatch Days. (Grace Kennedy/The Observer)
The under seven single-paddle race heads towards Harrison’s beachfront during the 2019 Sasquatch Days. (Grace Kennedy/The Observer)
The under seven single-paddle race heads towards Harrison’s beachfront during the 2019 Sasquatch Days. (Grace Kennedy/The Observer)
Attendees get ready for the canoe races during the 2019 Sasquatch Days at Harrison Lake. (Grace Kennedy/The Observer)
Kids enjoyed a beach day while others raced canoes during the 2019 Sasquatch Days. This little girl spent her time playing under an 11-man canoe waiting on the beach. (Grace Kennedy/The Observer)
Young canoe racers watch the women’s single-paddle race from the shoreline. (Grace Kennedy/The Observer)
A rescue boat heads to shore with an overturned canoe and racer during the women’s single-paddle race at the 2019 Sasquatch Days. (Grace Kennedy/The Observer)
The winner of the women’s single-paddle race on Saturday, June 15 (centre, purple shirt), heads to shore during the 2019 Sasquatch Days. (Grace Kennedy/The Observer)

Harrison Hot Springs and the Sts’ailes First Nation welcomed the eighth annual Sasquatch Days to the community on Saturday (June 15).

“This is what it’s about, seeing all of our families that travelled,” Sts’ailes Chief Ralph Leon said during the opening ceremonies. “Days like this are also proud, being proud of being Sts’ailes.”

Sasquatch Days first began back in 1938, with a two-day celebration in May that saw First Nations communities from all over descend on Harrison for canoe races and cultural sharing.

RELATED: Sasquatch Days makes a comeback in Harrison

Now, 81 years later, Harrison and Sts’ailes continue to welcome that tradition with a joint celebration from Saturday, June 15, to Sunday, June 16.

“These festivities are a wonderful opportunity for our communities to come together and celebrate the time-honoured tradition for canoe racing, breaking bread and strengthening relationships,” Harrison mayor Leo Facio said.

Sts’ailes councillor Boyd Peters agreed.

“This is an annual event that’s really special to Sts’ailes people and to the village of Harrison Hot Springs,” Peters . “We’re building a relationship. We’re working on an accord. We meet council to council. We’re working on developing that relationship further.”

Saturday’s events opened with a welcome procession from St. Alice Hall, which saw Harrison and Sts’ailes council members walk together down the Harrison waterfront.

The opening ceremonies also included a Sasquatch dance from young members of the Sts’ailes First Nation, three of whom were wearing traditional Sasquatch masks.

One of these masks, worn by the youngest Sasquatch, is a replica of a mask that was stolen after the 1938 Sasquatch Days, but was repatriated sometime later.

“The community got together and carved that mask with the advice of the elders,” Peters said. “It’s very very special to us.”

The rest of the day included canoe races, which will continue on Sunday (June 16) starting at noon, as well as medicine walks and a salmon barbecue.



grace.kennedy@ahobserver.com

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