Celebrating Tlicho Annual Gathering & 100th year Celebration

The Tłı̨chǫ Government had big plans to host Tłı̨chǫ citizens and visitors in Behchokǫ̀ this week to participate in the 17th Tłı̨chǫ Annual Gathering and 1st Session of the 5th Tłı̨chǫ Assembly. The week was to conclude with the 100 Year Anniversary celebration of the Signing of Treaty 11 and the first ever Tłı̨chǫ Festival.


The week began as planned on Sunday, August 15th with the sound of chartered planes landing in each Tłı̨chǫ community picking up joyful citizens transporting them all to Behchokǫ̀. That same afternoon, 11 canoes from Wekweètı̀ (2), Gamètı̀ (2), Whatı̀ (3) and Behchokǫ̀ (4) followed by many motorboats also arrived greeted cheerfully by many. Gun shots, flares and bear bangers went off at the first sight of the canoes while the drummers sang our songs greeting the water travelers. Once on shore, paddlers received sprays of hand sanitizer and donned their masks.  A prayer of thanks for their safe arrival was given, and a short drumdance was held to begin the celebrations of the week. Excitement was in the air, you could feel it! The week was going to be amazing!


The first day of the Annual Gathering went according to plan, starting with our 5th Tłı̨chǫ Assembly being sworn in.   The situation then quickly changed due to the detection of COVID-19 in the Sahtú region and Yellowknife. For the safety of the Tłı̨chǫ Citizens, our Tłı̨chǫ leadership made the difficult decision to move the Annual Gathering to a virtual format and to postpone the 100 Year Anniversary Celebration and Tłı̨chǫ Festival. With sadness but understanding, outlying community members were quickly chartered home.  Once home, outlying community members joined the Annual Gathering virtually.  Thankfully with the technology of today we can continue to participate and stay connected in these special circumstances.


To celebrate the 100 year anniversary of the signing of Treaty 11, the Community Government of Behchokǫ̀, in partnership with the Tłı̨chǫ Government Department of Culture and Lands Protection, planned to showcase a museum exhibit in honour of our first Tłı̨chǫ Chief Mǫwhı̀ and the Signing of Treaty 11 which took place in Behchokǫ̀ on August 22, 1921. Today, August 22, 2021, now marks 100 years since this very special occasion took place. Since we are not able to view this special museum space in person, a virtual tour was compiled for everyone to enjoy. We welcome you to a virtual tour of this wonderful exhibit in either English or Tłı̨chǫ.   In addition to the virtual tour of the museum space, a video presentation was also compiled of our activities this past week.


As you view these videos, please reflect on the past, our present and your vision for our future. Our journey has been long and not always easy, but with help from our Creator and our willingness to get through, we will endure. Together, in Tłı̨chǫ unity, let us embrace and begin blazing the trail for the next 100 years. Happy 100th Anniversary!




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