SĪGWAN (SPRING) FESTIVAL
Free Indigenous Festival March 25 - 27
Please join Indigenous Experiences, producers of the Summer Solstice Indigenous Festival and operators of Mādahòkì Farm in Ottawa’s greenbelt to celebrate the Spring Season in the context of Indigenous culture.
Everyone is invited to reconnect with the land while learning about Indigenous traditions during this beautiful change of season. Enjoy authentic Indigenous programming and an Indigenous Makers and Farmers Market, interactive creative workshops, culinary delights and meet the rare Ojibwe Spirit Horses - fun for young and old.
FREE - STAGGERED ADMISSION - ADVANCE REGISTRATION
- Visitors must register in advance
- Staggered entry in 30-minute arrival windows
- For a complete experience, plan to spend 2- 3 hours onsite
- Masks are required when in indoor spaces
4420 West Hunt Club Road
Ottawa, ON K2R 1H4
SĪGWAN FESTIVAL HIGHLIGHTS
- On March 22, watch a comedy show featuring indigenous comedians of Turtle Island, Got Land? at Algonquin College Theatre
- Bring out your inner artist as you create your own Indigenous painting using stencils of woodland style animals. Great workshop for all ages. (Register online, $10 per person)
- Enjoy a Beading Workshop with Deborah Ratt that includes a pattern, beads, attachments, needles & thread (Register on-site. Feathers & feathers kit $35 (9 years & older), River kit $35 and Slidding Kit $7 (children).
- Savour meals inspired by our Annishnaabe Sugar Moon! Make your own maple taffy, with Indigenous harvested syrup ($5 each). Enjoy a meal of maple bbq bison meatballs, traditional baked maple beans and Bannock and a beverage ($20 each full meal). Cedar Wildberry Chai Tea, Hot Chocolate and Bannock are available on site.
- Enjoy live cultural performances and storytelling on the Celebration Stage.
- Meet the rare and endangered Ojibwe Spirit Horses and listen to their story of survival and resilience with Spirit Horse Advocate Artist Rhonda Snow.
- Shop the Indigenous makers market with dozens of Indigenous vendors selling onsite and online.
- Walk the Legacy Trail and gain traditional knowledge about the change of seasons and moons and the plants and medicines that are important to Indigenous culture.
- Visit the Reconciliation Rock Station, choose an orange rock, add a message, picture or sentiment of reconciliation to take home or leave as a legacy on-site. Make a donation to Legacy of Hope to support residential school survivors and advocacy.
- Meet our small animals on the farm and enjoy some farm play on the hay bales & teeter-totter.
- Sit by the fire to watch and learn the traditional process of boiling sap into maple syrup – a sweet gift to the world from our local Indigenous communities.
- Enjoy a horse drawn wagon ride through the farm every day from 12pm to 3pm.
10:30 AM - Elders Opening
11 AM/1 PM/3 PM - Trickster & the Ducks Puppet Show and Pow Wow Dance
Nanabush (Trickster) and the Ducks is a fun, interactive puppet production for all ages that shares one of the great legends of our trickster – who always has to learn a lesson the hard way! A live Pow Wow and Hoop Dance performance will follow.
12 PM/2 PM/4 PM - Spirit Horse Stories & Hand Drumming
Spirit Horse Advocate and artist Rhonda Snow has captured the oral history of this beautiful rare and endangered breed of horse that once roamed free through these lands. Her art captures our elders oral histories of the ponies and their story of survival.
You will also enjoy the heartbeat of mother earth with some traditional songs on hand-drum.
Savour meals inspired by our Annishnaabe Sugar Moon!
- Make your own maple taffy, with Indigenous harvested syrup - $5 each
- Enjoy a meal of maple bbq bison meatballs, traditional baked maple beans and bannock and a beverage ($20 each full meal)
- Cedar Wildberry Chai Tea, Hot Chocolate and Bannock available on site
BEADING WORKSHOP WITH DEBORAH RATT
1.5 – 2 hours to complete workshop
Available 10am-5pm each day of the festival. No set times
Registration on site only, no pre-registration. Payment can be made by cash, credit or debit card.
Workshops include a Pattern, beads, attachments, needles & thread.
Feathers and feathers 35$ kit. (9 years & older)
River 35$ kit.
Slidding 7$ Kit (children).
SHOP ON SITE & ONLINE
Support local Indigenous entrepreneurs! Over 20 vendors will be on-site at the festival selling a variety of Indigenous art, jewellery, craft and food creations including seasonal planters wreaths and more- with an Indigenous flair. Everything from honey to beaded earrings and from sweetgrass candles to Indigenous maple syrup and fresh fish suppliers and so much more!.
Our Trading Post is open year-round on-site (in the Grey Farmhouse) Wednesday to Sunday 11 AM - 4 PM or Shop 24/7 online.
Shop over 20 vendors on site
OJIBWE SPIRIT HORSES
WITH ARTIST RHONDA SNOW
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM Daily
Indigenous Experiences are proud to welcome our new herd of the rare and endangered Ojibwe Spirit Horses to the farm. These five horses really share their own story on the sacred connection to the Ontario lands where they roamed free for thousands of years. You will have a chance to meet these special ponies and hear their story.
Artist Rhonda Snow was once an Ojibwe Spirit Horse caretaker and key part of bringing this breed back from the brink of extinction as recognized by Rare Breeds Canada. Rhonda has travelled and collected the oral history of these ponies from elders across Turtle Island (North America) which are captured in her beautiful and colourful woodland style art. Rhonda will help to share the special story of these ponies and work on new artwork to be installed on the farm to help educate and advocate for this special breed
LEGACY TRAIL & RECONCILIATION ROCK STATION
At any time during your visit, we invite you to visit our Reconciliation Rock Station and choose an orange rock to add your own message, picture or sentiment of reconciliation. You are invited to take the rock home to your own space or add it as a legacy along the new walking trails through the property.
Interpretive signage along the trail provides traditional knowledge of Indigenous teachings about the change of seasons and moons and identifies
significant plants and medicines- all from an Indigenous perspective.
Donations to our partners Legacy of Hope gratefully accepted to support residential school survivors and advocacy.
FARM PLAY & FARM ANIMALS
Meet our small animals on the farm and enjoy some farm play on the hay bales & teeter-totter.
HORSE DRAWN WAGON RIDES
12:00 PM - 3:00 PM Friday, Saturday and Sunday
Available in limited quantities. No advance registration and no cost.
Provided by Harvest Hill Farms
TRADITIONAL MAPLE SYRUP MAKING DEMONSTRATION
Sit by the fire to watch and learn the traditional process of boiling sap into maple syrup – a sweet
gift to the world from our local Indigenous communities.
GOT LAND? STAND-UP COMEDY VARIETY SHOW
Indigenous Experiences is proud to support the Spectrasonic presentation of:
DJ SHUB – WAR CLUB LIVE
Bronson Centre - Thu March 24th,
Doors at 7pm - Tickets $21
19+ ID required
*As food and materials are purchased in advance based on registration numbers, we will not provide refunds if unable to attend but we are happy to provide a take home version to be picked up at the farm over the weekend.*