*Cancelled* World Storytelling Day
Saturday, March 28, 2020 - 6:00pm to 9:00pm
Join a voyage we can all take together, into the oldest story from the area you will ever hear.
On Saturday, March 28, from 7-9 p.m., Storytelling Orillia and the Orillia Museum of Art & History present Maadaadizi (pronounced maw-daw-dih-zih), meaning “start a journey.”
Elder Mark Douglas of the Chippewas of Rama First Nation, a holder of this ancient oral history, has been offered time and space to tell the story of the weirs at the Narrows between Lakes Simcoe and Couchiching, a place central to this area’s culture and identity for more than 5,000 years.
A knowledge keeper, Douglas has received the Lakehead University Civitas award for his work bringing Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities together through storytelling. He is a founder of the Mnjikaning Fish Fence Circle (MFFC) and a key member of Storytelling Orillia.
“The fish weirs story is all about journeys,” says Fay MacKenzie, a storyteller and teacher at the Mnjikaning Kendaaswin Elementary School, who also will tell on March 28. MacKenzie is Métis, holds many stories, and is an animated and engaging teller.
“I have some complimentary stories about Nanabush and his journeys around Lake Couchiching and the Narrows and beyond,” MacKenzie says. Nanabush is a teacher and friend of the Ojibway people, who often instructs through humour.
According to a publication of the MFFC, which formed in the early 1990s to protect remaining fish fence stakes at the Narrows during bridge construction, Minjikaning (meaning fish fence), “is one of the oldest human developments in North America. At about the time that construction of the Great Pyramid at Giza in Egypt was beginning some 5,000 years ago, the installation of the fish fences (at what is now the Atherley Narrows) was under way.”
Mnjikaning became a place of cultural importance for indigenous nations, a sacred place for ceremony and gathering held in high regard across Turtle Island.
Mary Lou Kirby of the MFFC has agreed to join Douglas and MacKenzie for Maadaadizi, to speak about the ongoing work of the circle as time allows.
Storytelling Orillia is proud to present this important story of migration and meeting in Orillia, a story that has always relied on the oral tradition, in celebration of World Storytelling Day at OMAH.
World Storytelling Day is a global celebration of oral storytelling that began in Sweden in the early 1990s and has spread around the world, held on or near the spring equinox. This year’s global theme is voyages.
Tickets are $15 and will be on sale at OMAH starting March 11. They can be purchased at the Visitor Experiences Desk or by phone 705-326-2159
For further information:
On the fish weirs and the MFFC:
On the event:
Susan Charters, 705-323-0065
Storytelling Orillia, firstname.lastname@example.org
Ninette Gyorody, Executive Director,
Orillia Museum of Art & History