340 Indigenous youth gather in Mississauga for a hockey tournament and cultural activities


Published March 24, 2023 at 3:36 pm

indigenous youth mississauga
Indigenous Tourism Ontario photo

Indigenous cultural activities made for a fun week in Mississauga during the 2023 Little Native Hockey League tournament hosted by Nipissing First Nation.

The tournament, launching the inaugural Indigenous Tourism Ontario All Stars Cup, brought 340 First Nations youth to Mississauga from March 12 to 16, according to a press release from Indigenous Tourism Ontario.

In addition to the hockey tournament, youth were invited to participate in activities and workshops aimed at fostering interest in the tourism industry.

Activities included cooking, Virtual Reality sessions, workshops and archery.

Indigenous chefs led several culinary sessions. Featured chefs included Chef Tammy Maki of Raven Rising, Chef Douglas Trudeau of 4 Winds Catering, Chef Jordan Clayton-Douglas and Chef Cedar Smoke of Daashmaawaan Bimaadzijin, and Chef Paul Owl of Treeteas Brewing.

Youth could try Indigenous Virtual Reality (VR) experiences through ORIGIN, an Indigenous VR company.

Neil Debassige of Fuel the Fire TV, led a real-world archery 101 session. This provided youth with an interactive and educational experience that left them inspired to learn more about archery and possible career paths in the Indigenous tourism industry.

There were workshops on tourism, medicine wheel teachings, Science North Indigenous Ingenuity workshops, community engagement, customer service, leading and coaching skills.

Also, youth could watch and vote in Skode, a live pitch business competition, where six Indigenous tourism entrepreneurs presented their new Indigenous tourism ideas to a judging panel of Indigenous leaders and entrepreneurs.

Contestant Sarah Sproule from Chippewas of Georgina Island First Nation was awarded the $20,000 grand prize to support the development of her new Indigenous tourism idea – Wayeshkad Trapline Tours & Accommodations.

Indigenous Tourism Ontario is a provincial non-profit and membership association supporting the growth of Indigenous tourism in Ontario and Canada while addressing the demand for the development and marketing of authentic Indigenous experiences.

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