The mini rollercoaster zooms by with screaming people, the other cries come from far above on another wild ride… yes, it’s summer time folks. Time to relax, sit back and enjoy what the southerners like to call amusement parks. The screams debate, just for a minute, then climb into the high notes as the coaster does a three-sixty. Magically, some coins appear from the heavens and gather in the area that no one can get to, behind a wire fence. I notice some credit cards and sunglasses, a Blackberry or two bleeps FB’s, barely discernible over the din of the thousands of happy people. I clutch my wallet closely, just to make sure it’s still there, then try out some cotton candy.

Besides all the neat wonders that amusement parks are known for, Cree World has been busy too. It seems that the weekend events over the course of the summer are pack full of events everywhere, and it’s wedding time too. After witnessing a number of weddings, it’s nice to see people dressed up for a change. Suit rentals must go nuts as Cree weddings number into the hundreds of participants – just for the wedding party and getting them back all intact must be the wedding planner’s nightmare come true.

Then there are all the powwows and good old getting-out-on-the-land, coming-back-to-the-past events. Wow, it boggles and wonders the mind at the same time. Just how many people are out cavorting around? And there’s still time left before September, then it’s back to the grind of work and school.

Back in the day, regional powwows and games were the main attraction, with live bingos that took all night to an end, then the fiddle strikes up and the dance takes over. People had stamina in those days, dancing until the sun rose. Then, the summer Olympics struck a chord with pillow fighting and carrying bags of flour, the sacks weighing in at 50lbs each and each competitor had to carry it with a head strap over a certain distance. I think that those who won this contest would probably survive a minor car crash without suffering from whiplash. Using bows and arrows were a popular competition and, of course, what event didn’t have the mile-long tug-of-war with nearly everyone pulling against each other. Whatever the game was, it sure was a lot of fun and everyone played.

Canoe races really were long events, when crossing the river and back, fighting the currents and winds, and, of course, taking a smoke break here and there, made sure that our roots in canoeing and plying the waters of the North was part of our lives. Log sawing and wood-chopping skills were put to the test and many times, the women proved that they were just as capable, as this was usually part of life and normal, except during competition, the wood chips flew and flurries of sawdust hit the sand ground from a finely honed saw.

Sharpshooters would show off their ability to put lead dead on at a mile away and homemade shot shells were sacrificed for some fancy shooting shows. The high-powered rifles needed binoculars just to see the results as targets were picked off a mile away. Wow, eat your heart out Annie Oakley!

Whatever turns you on when it comes to making your summer one to remember for years, or at least until the next long weekend, sometimes it’s worth the effort to check out the local neighbourhood for a good time.