The presentation of this third annual event Nitahigan ’96 permitted our guests to discover the different Aboriginal talents. This event, which was held June 14th, welcomed over 400 guests who shared in this unforgettable evening of pride and solidarity.

The show opened with Red Thunder, a group of traditional dancers from Calgary. The evening continued on a musical note by the Nation’s own Deantha Edmunds, an Inuk opera singer. A colourful fashion show was presented by Betty Ann Pennier, a Coast Salish designer, from Mission, B.C.

Steven Sheshamush, a Cree soapstone sculptor, gave a demonstration of how he does his art. One of his sculptures was auctioned during the evening and was purchased by a group of Cree businessmen. The guests admired an art exhibition
by Virginia R Bordeleau which was held in the entrance hall of the Hotel.

A six-course Aboriginal haute cuisine meal was prepared by Chef Andrew George, Jr., of the Wet’ suwet’ en Nation, from Burns Lake, B.C. This impressive meal, as well as the entertainment, captured the interest of all present. The menu included smoked sturgeon with caviar, bannock, wild flower salad, wild goose aiguillettes with cream corn, aboriginal chowder, caribou served with a cranberry poivrade. A wild berry dream catcher dessert was more than enough to satisfy a sweet tooth.

Modern technology, by way of video conference, enabled other personalities to share in our evening, such as Tina Keeper from the television series North of 60 and Ted Nolan, coach of the Buffalo Sabres. We also had the pleasure of viewing a pre-recorded message of encouragement, from Shania Twain, on the importance of Native Friendship Centres. A special recording was made for Nitahigan ’96 by Richard Seguin and Florent Vollant.

The professionalism and charm of our emcees, Michele Rouleau, host of the television broadcast Nations on Radio-Québec, and Florent Voilant, vocal artist and composer of the famous group Kashtin, along with our Co-Presidents Gisèle Marchand of “Meubles Marchand” and Albert Diamond, President of Air Creebec, they were a dynamic team in making this special event a big success.

Florent Voilant surprised everyone by ending the evening with a couple of Kashtin’s songs that pleased the crowd immensely.