Ceremony on summer solstice transfers Blackfoot tipi design to City

Calgarians will see tipis and a trapper’s tent in parks this summer

Calgarians will see tipis and a trapper’s tent in downtown Calgary parks this summer thanks to new relationships, based on trust and understanding, between Indigenous Nations and The City of Calgary.

The City has been working closely with Blackfoot Confederacy, Tsuut’ina Nation, Stoney Nakoda Nations and Métis Nation of Alberta, Region 3 to provide spaces in parks for Indigenous Peoples to host cultural celebrations, traditional practices and sharing.

As part of this project, a ceremony was was held at Prince’s Island Park today in Mohkinstsis to officially transfer a Blackfoot tipi design to two City of Calgary staff members. This day was chosen based on the spiritual significance of the summer solstice. 

June 21 is also National Indigenous Peoples Day, when we recognize and celebrate the history, heritage, resilience and diversity of First Nations, Inuit and Métis across Canada. The addition of tipis and a trapper’s tent to Calgary parks provides another space for Indigenous Peoples to connect with their culture and a valuable learning opportunity for all Calgarians. Adding tipis and a trapper’s tent to these public spaces also supports calls to action identified in the White Goose Flying report and is part of our shared journey towards Truth and Reconciliation.

Today’s tipi transfer ceremony was conducted by Traditional Grandfathers Leonard Weasel Traveller (Bastien) and Clement Leather, supported by Holy Buffalo Woman (Motokiiks) Leanne Sleigh. The Blackfoot Confederacy tipi design was transferred to Indigenous Landscape Strategist Crystal Many Fingers and Parks & Open Spaces Director Kyle Ripley. In Blackfoot tradition, these gifts must be received by a male and female (on behalf of The City).

“As a Blackfoot daughter, mother, sister and best friend, I am both honored and humbled to accept this tipi transfer on behalf of the City of Calgary on this ultimate day of Reconciliation,” said Indigenous Landscape Strategist Crystal Many Fingers.

“I am humbled to participate in this traditional Blackfoot ceremony and to be sharing responsibility of accepting and caring for this tipi with Crystal Many Fingers” said Parks & Open Spaces Director Kyle Ripley. “We are building new relationships based on trust and understanding that we believe will benefit many generations to come.” 

For more information about the project, or how to request a tipi or trapper’s tent at your event or festival, visit Information about where to find tipis and trapper’s tent this summer will be available soon on