Toronto observes National Indigenous Peoples Day with Sunrise Ceremony

Image Credit: Sunrise ceremony. Image credit: City of Toronto Twitter

Toronto/CMEDIA: Organized by the city of Toronto, National Indigenous Peoples Day (NIPD) was observed by Mayor John Tory at Nathan Phillips Square on Tuesday following a Sunrise Ceremony honoring Indigenous traditions and culture.

“It is an honor to proclaim National Indigenous Peoples Day and celebrate the diverse heritage, cultures, and traditions of First Nations, Inuit, and Métis Peoples with the return of the annual sunrise ceremony to Nathan Phillips Square,” Tory said in the news release.

“Today, we also reaffirm our commitment to advancing truth, justice and reconciliation, as well as working together with Indigenous community members and leaders to ensure Toronto is a place where Indigenous people can thrive,” he said.

The Sunrise Ceremony event returned to Nathan Phillips Square, Toronto for the first time since 2019.

Led by Elder Garry Sault of the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation, this year’s Sunrise Ceremony featured a traditional Water Ceremony and teachings from Knowledge Keeper Kim Wheatley and traditional drumming by Young Creek Drummers.

After the ceremony, Tory presented the NIPD proclamation to Pamela Hart, Co-Chair of the City’s Aboriginal Affairs Advisory Committee (AAAC) and Executive Director of the Native Women’s Resource Centre of Toronto.

First proclaimed in 1996, NIPD celebrates the unique heritage, diversity and contributions of First Nations, Inuit, and Métis Peoples across Toronto and all of Turtle Island.

National Indigenous Peoples Day also helps build stronger relationships with Indigenous communities, rooted in mutual respect and understanding.

NIPD also is a reminder of the continuous recovery of unmarked graves of those who never returned home from residential schools across the country and mourn, as well as recommit to actively working towards truth, justice, and reconciliation in their memory.