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National Aboriginal Day celebrated in Halifax

Click to play video: 'Halifax celebrates National Aboriginal Day' Halifax celebrates National Aboriginal Day
Hundreds of people attended events on Wednesday in honour of National Aboriginal Day. Global’s Steve Silva reports – Jun 21, 2017

Events celebrating National Aboriginal Day were held in Halifax on Wednesday.

“It really was about bringing everybody together, having a common day, having that opportunity to have a real conversation and really celebrate the local talent,” said Pamela Glode-Desrochers, executive director of the Mi’kmaw Native Friendship Centre.

The event she referenced was called Mawita’jik, which means “let us gather” in English, she said.

The centre organized activities at the Halifax Common, including dance competitions, and saw hundreds in attendance Wednesday morning.

Alan Syliboy spent more than two years making a signpost that was installed at a field in the area last week — Wednesday was the official launch.

READ MORE: Ottawa renames Langevin Block in show of respect to Indigenous Peoples

The permanent art piece has paddles at the top to symbolize how important canoes were to the Mi’kmaq.

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“I think it symbolizes reconciliation because it’s right here in the middle of everybody,” he said, adding that it’s “a constant reminder that we’re here, and we get to hopefully get together and live together a little bit better.”

The event also focused on truth and reconciliation.

“People talk about reconciliation, and people often don’t know what to do and how to do it. Well, by having everybody today, this is part of reconciliation, it’s part of education, it’s part of bringing people together — having that common ground,” Glode-Desrochers said.

Other events were held across the country to celebrate the day, which is set to undergo a name change.

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