It’s no secret that signs of colonization are almost everywhere here in Charlottetown, and there has been a lot of (un)learning and unpacking of our collective history over the last several years.
Our city still has a long way to go, but is finally facing and acknowledging its shadows and working towards a brighter future where everyone feels accepted, valued, and respected.
Here in Charlottetown, we honour the original inhabitants of Prince Edward Island—the Mi’kmaq people—who called the island Epekwitk (which means “lying in the water”) and have inhabited the land and waterways of the Island for over 12,000 years.
During your visit, we encourage you to explore the ever-growing amount of ways to honour and embrace Mi’kmaq culture in our city. Read on for some places to start…
Stop by The Indigenous PEI Store at 111B Grafton Street
This brand new shop opened in late June 2023 and carries an abundance of locally made, authentic Indigenous art & products. You can also find high-quality apparel that promotes the Mi’kmaq culture, printed in-house by Mi’kmaq Printing & Design. While you’re in, you may also just get lucky enough to experience a live cultural performance on the indoor stage, and/or get a sneak peek of a local artisan crafting their beautiful product.
Visit The Medicine Wheel Garden With Mi’kmaq Bench
This display in the Confederation Landing Park is an artistic, horticultural rendition of the Medicine Wheel, a symbol shared by Aboriginal Peoples across Canada and abroad. It includes carvings by Charlottetown artist Levi Cannon Whitebear and Councillor Francis Jadis of Abegweit First Nation. The four colours of the Medicine Wheel are represented by flowers and plants, and an inviting bench, with special engravings in Mi’kmaq, English and French, is placed in its centre.
Attend A Mi’kmaq Heritage Actors Performance
Celebrating over a decade as Atlantic Canada’s only Indigenous Theatre Company, the Mi’kmaq Heritage Actors are back as part of The Charlottetown Festival with a new show Mi’kmaq Stories of Rabbit and His Friends, a fun performance for all ages that shares the history of the Mi’kmaq people through stories, songs, and beautiful traditional dance. June 27 – July 8.
Participate In A Powwow Or Mawi’omi
The term Mawi’omi refers to a gathering of Mi’kmaw people to celebrate life. Sometimes referred to as a Powwow, this event includes Indigenous ceremony, storytelling, dance, drumming and gathering with friends and family. Keep an eye out for gatherings happening in Charlottetown throughout 2023.
Visit A Parks Canada Site
L’nuey and Parks Canada regularly work together toward the accomplishment of their mutual goals. Among those goals are the active engagement of PEI Mi’kmaq First Nations in the management of the Prince Edward Island National Park and National Historic Sites; and the presentation of Mi’kmaq history and culture – at Parks Canada sites and beyond.
Places To Find Mi’kmaq Art & Culture In Charlottetown:
• Mi’kmaq Printing And Design – 101 Prince St
• Charlottetown Marina – Indigenous crafters in the summer
• PEI Crafts Council Retail Gallery – 98 Water St
• Crow’s Nest Shop – Mi’kmaq Leather and Quill Work – 138 Richmond St
• The Indigenous Artisan Market – Nov 25
• The Guild – 7 Sacred Teachings on the inside lobby – 111 Queen St
• Confederation Centre Of the Arts – Mi’kmaq beaded Jacket and “AWA Truth and Reconciliation Painting” by Inuit artist Bronson Jacque – 145 Richmond St
Charlottetown Mawi’omi Dates:
Stay tuned in to our event calendar and on our socials for more dates!
• Truth And Reconciliation Day Events at Province House | Sept 30
• Treaty Day Mawi’omi | Oct 1
“The history of our people is like the sand on the beach
with each grain having a story to teach
We look to our past so our tomorrows will be bright
and tomorrows are always just within our sight”
– Julie Pellissier-Lush
A piece from the poem “Wabanaki – The People From Where the Sun Rises”
We acknowledge that the land upon which Charlottetown sits is part of unceded Mi’kmaw territory. Epekwitk (Prince Edward Island) is located in Mi’kma’ki, the ancestral and unceded territory of the Mi’kmaq People. We pay our respects to the Epekwitnewaq Mi’kmaq who have occupied this Island for over 12,000 years. We honour the “Treaties of Peace and Friendship” which recognized Mi’kmaq title and established an ongoing relationship between nations.