9 Indigenous Creators and Events You Can’t Miss for National Indigenous History Month

June is a very special time of year: it’s National Indigenous History Month, and National Indigenous Peoples Day is June 21. Throughout the month, there are many ways to support Indigenous creators and events across Turtle Island (North America).

Start by exploring some Indigenous-produced media with APTN Lumi, a streaming service that offers everything from inspiring documentaries to cartoons. In June, APTN Lumi will present a selection of specials and, for $4.99 per month, Canadians can enjoy unlimited access to all content.

Bonus: commercial-free shows are available in English, French and 15 Indigenous languages.

From there, there are so many outstanding Indigenous artisans, musicians and entrepreneurs worth checking out.

APTN Indigenous Day Live 2022 (IDL)

APTN IDL 2022 is a live, in-person celebration with an exciting roster of performances by talented artists, food vendors, a craft market and even a Métis fiddle competition. This not-to-be-missed event will take place on Saturday, June 18 in Winnipeg at Forks Market (1 Forks Market Road).

The theme for 2022 is “Celebrating Our Lands”, spotlighting Indigenous women and the 2SLGBTQ+ community to create a truly special event where all are welcome. Plus, entry to the event is free.

If you can’t show up in person, you can still stream the action on all APTN channels, the APTN YouTube channel, AMI-tv and participating community radio stations across the country on the same day.

For anyone streaming online, APTN IDL 2022 will then be available on APTN lumi and again on all APTN channels on June 21 for National Indigenous Peoples Day.

Website

The Bannock Girls

Courtesy of APTN

The Bannock Babes are a fierce collective of Two-Spirit and Indigiqueer transvestites based in Treaty 1 territory.

Since their first group performance in 2019, the collective has captured the attention of local charities and international celebrities. They continue to perform regularly at fundraising events, concerts and friendship centers across Turtle Island.

Recently, the band opened for Drag Race legend Morgan McMichaels at the West End Cultural Center in Winnipeg.

You can witness the glitzy and glamorous performance of the Bannock Babes in person at APTN IDL 2022or by tuning into the show.

Website

Crystal Shawanda

Courtesy of APTN

If you love country and blues, you’ll love singer-songwriter and guitarist Crystal Shawanda.

Crystal is Ojibwe from Wikwemikong First Nation on Manitoulin Island in Ontario. In 2007, she signed with RCA Records Nashville. Today, she’s based in Tennessee, which is when she’s not touring.

Her single “You Can Let Go” was a huge hit, and she’s now a world-renowned country star. Fallen in love with the blues, she released her album Church House Blues in 2020 — Crystal follows her wherever her creativity takes her.

You can see her rise to fame in the Country Music Television series, Crystal: Living the Dreamand you can watch Crystal perform live onAPTN IDL 2022.

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DJ Koukum

The party is everywhere Cheyanna Kootenhayoo (DJ Kookum) is. He is a talented DJ, video editor and media creator from Alexis Nakota Sioux Nation and Cold Lake First Nation.

EDM and hip-hop music inspire their sound, but they bring their own unique twist to their beats. DJ Kookum has toured across Turtle Island and overseas with the Snotty Nose Rez Kids.

Now they are based in Vancouver and for over a decade they have been editing television shows, documentaries and promotional videos. On top of all that, they are the musical supervisor of the children’s television series coyote science (which you can watch on APTN).

Their talents don’t stop there. They also lead workshops, run the sound and lights for community dance parties, mentor youth, host a podcast (called Immersive knowledge transfer), perform virtually and have an online store.

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Beauty of the cheekbones

@alexandrataziker | instagram

Cheekbone Beauty is an Indigenous-owned beauty brand known for creating clean, vegan and sustainable cosmetics. Founded by Anishinaabe entrepreneur Jen Harper in 2016, the brand is designed for low environmental impact and maximum portability.

The beauty brand’s mission centers around giving back to the community, closing the education funding gap, and increasing Indigenous representation in the beauty industry.

To date, Cheekbone Beauty has donated over $150,000 to causes including Shannen’s Dream, the Navajo Water Project and One Tree Planted.

Don’t forget to check APTN IDL 2022, where Cheekbone Beauty products will be used on performers and entertainers during the show. Get your own supplies online or at Sephora Canada branches.

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Manitoba Mukluks

A Manitoba Métis from Treaty 1 territory, Sean McCormick was only 23 when he founded Manitobah Mukluks. Since 1997, Manitobah Mukluks has been manufacturing and selling traditional mukluks, moccasins, slippers and mittens. In fact, it is one of the fastest growing shoe brands in the country.

You can find Manitobah Mukluks at high-end retailers like Holt Renfrew and Nordstrom, plus they’re sold in more than 50 countries through the company’s online store.

Manitobah Mukluks’ Storyboot project aims to revive the practice of handcrafted mukluks and moccasins. The company partners with elders and artisans, then donates the profits to the community: all you have to do is buy one of these beautiful handcrafted pieces.

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Party Cafe Bistro

Owner and Chef Christa Bruneau-Guenther opened Feast Cafe Bistro in 2015 in Winnipeg. A proud French Métis and member of the Peguis First Nation, Christa combines traditional and contemporary ingredients to bring culture into the kitchen.

Feast Cafe Bistro is passionate about improving native cuisine, giving back to the community, and championing native people through nutritious meals and various community initiatives.

If you are in Winnipeg for APTN IDL 2022, Visit the Feast Cafe Bistro at 587 Ellice Avenue.

Website

MoccasinJo

MoccasinJo | Facebook

No one knows how to perfect a morning cup of coffee like husband-wife duo Lise and Walter David of MoccasinJo. They have been operating the micro-roaster for nearly 20 years on Kanehsatake Mohawk Territory.

You can try their fresh beans at cafes in southwestern Quebec. If you’re also a barbecue lover, you’ll love their recent collaboration with Kanel Spices: a blend of sweet and savory caramelized coffee to make your garden gatherings this summer a little tastier.

Website

Sriracha Revolver

Spice things up with mouth-watering homemade hot sauces from Sriracha Revolver, as featured on Chuck and the First Peoples Kitchen on APTN. Founded by mom, wife, and Indigenous artisan Jordan Hocking in 2017, the hot sauce brand is here to help up your cooking game.

Small-batch sriracha-style artisan sauces are made in Vancouver, BC. Sriracha Revolver’s spicy flavor combinations (like cilantro lime, clean mango and jalapeño ginger) are inspired by Jordan’s travels abroad and love of cultural cuisine.

The brand’s fun name combines the name of a small town in Thailand and the Spanish verb for “stir, mix, mess”.

Website

The list of talented Indigenous creators could go on and on with the number of quality products, mouth-watering foods, inspiring performances and Indigenous businesses to discover and support.

National Indigenous History Month is a time of celebration and reflection. if you’re in Winnipeg, you won’t want to miss the exciting in-person tour APTN IDL 2022. If you can’t make it, be sure to catch it on APTN channels.

To learn more about APTN Lumi, sign up on their website or follow them on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube. Stay up to date with Indigenous Day Live by checking out the event website.

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