National Indigenous Peoples Day was held earlier this week on Tuesday, June 21st, and Dakota Tipi First Nation celebrated in honour of the day.

The day was one for Canadians to recognize and celebrate the unique heritage, cultures and outstanding contributions of the Indigenous.

The day involved prayer, dancing and food at the Dakota Tipi Health Centre.

Rain Handel, the cook and the pow wow instructor at the event, says the importance of this day was for many reasons, but teaching the youth to be proud of who they are and where they came from was big for her.

She talks about the purpose of the day.

"To celebrate our way of life and to kind of bring back our history that was taken away from us from at residential schools, celebrating the people that have passed, all the children that were found as well as our missing and murdered indigenous men & women."

Handel says she loved the turnout and support that was shown.

"We had some people from Sioux Valley and Long Plain come here to celebrate with us. It's nice to see a lot of people here. You don't see that from a lot of people when the community is kind of broken off from each other and drama and all that, but it's nice to see everyone come in and celebrate together."

Handel notes her favourite part of the day was the potato dance.

"The potato dance is a couple dance. You could do it with your significant other or a friend or whatever, and you put a potato on the side of your head, and you dance around, and you make sure that potato doesn't fall down on the ground."

She adds that on top of the Pow wow dancing she did on National Indigenous Peoples Day, she holds Pow wow dancing at Dakota Tipi, which is open to the community every Tuesday and Thursday at 4:00 p.m.

Terry, a community member from Dakota Tipi, shares that organizers weren't too sure how the event would go as it wasn't too publicized.

"I guess it was a blessing from the weather because no one can really go out or nobody wants to be dancing out in the rain and other events. So, it was kind of a bonus for us. It made the turnout good for us. We had prayers like we usually do to start an event, then we had a meal everyone shared together and then the round dance."

Terry adds that he was proud of everyone at the centre who organized the event and thought of the Indigenous people.