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Indigenous Ceremony to Bless Opening of ‘Journey to Churchill’

July 1, 2014 8:49 AM | News

By Sarah Klein

Journey to Churchill Landscape

The Churchill coast landscape recreation inside Assiniboine Park Zoo. (ASSINIBOINE PARK CONSERVANCY)

Before the Journey to Churchill opens at Assiniboine Park Zoo on Thursday, a traditional indigenous blessing ceremony will take place.

The early morning ceremony is scheduled for Wednesday beginning at sunrise (5:30 a.m.) at the Assiniboine Park Nature Playground.

“At such a transformative time in the park’s history, this blessing ceremony is an important reminder of the great privilege and responsibility we shoulder as caretakers of the land, the animals that live in the coo and the park, and the people who come here to connect with nature and each other,” said Margaret Redmond, president and CEO of Assiniboine Park Conservancy. “This is an important and meaningful ceremony and we are honoured to be a part of it.”

The ceremony will honour the northern territory of Churchill (Treaty No. 5) and the southern territory of Winnipeg (Treaty No. 1) in which Assiniboine Park and Assiniboine Park Zoo are located.

Journey to Churchill opens to the public at noon on Thursday.