Today’s press conference for the upcoming Every Child Matters hockey game revealed exciting and significant details about the event, and culminated in a special ceremony to honour Calgary Hitmen VP, Mike Moore, with a traditional Blackfoot name.
Phyllis Webstad, creator of Orange Shirt Day, to join as a guest of honour:
“Orange Shirt Day”, recognized annually on Sept. 30, was started by Phyllis Webstad as a local, grassroots initiative, and has since grown to international recognition. The day commemorates those who attended Residential Schools, and honours its survivors and families/communities.
Phyllis Webstad will attend the March 27 Every Child Matters game as an honoured guest, and she joined us virtually to share a message for today’s event. Watch/listen here:
Fan favourite “Farley the Fox” gets a new look:
“Sinopa” translates to “fox” in Blackfoot, the traditional language of the Siksika (Blackfoot) people. Farley’s new game day jersey features this Blackfoot name, and his game day beat will be courtesy of his new hand drum, made in the traditional Blackfoot way, and featuring Calgary Hitmen symbolism.
Siksika Health Services’ CEO, Dr. Tyler White, reinforced that sports mascots often have not represented Indigenous culture or people respectfully. But with Farley’s new look, the Blackfoot language and drum are represented in a good way, and help support awareness and education about Blackfoot culture.
Game day food options to include Blackfoot cuisine, language, dancing & music:
Local Siksika Nation chef, Chris Eagle Rib, will offer Blackfoot food options, from the special event ‘test kitchen’. Attendees are encouraged to get theirs quickly – these specialty items went fast at the last Every Child Matters game!
The game will be broadcast live in the Blackfoot language by Siksika Elders, Butch Wolf Leg, Eldon Weasel Child, and Vincent Yellow Old Woman on Windspeaker Radio (CFWE), and Siksika Nation’s local radio station: 104.7FM.
Immediately following today’s press conference event, Mike Moore, Calgary Hitmen VP and Alternative Governor was honoured in a special naming and face painting ceremony, conducted by Siksika Elder, Clement Leather. Traditional Blackfoot names hold great significance as identifiers and descriptors; the name selected for Mike Moore, Saapaatsiimaitapii (“SA-PA-TSEE-MAY-TA-PI”) translates to “caring, humble, and understanding: encompassing of all these things.”
The Every Child Matters game will take place at the Scotiabank Saddledome in Calgary, Alberta at 2:00pm on March 27, 2022 between Calgary Hitmen and Swift Current Broncos. Participants of all ages and backgrounds are encouraged to attend the event; tickets can be purchased on the Calgary Hitmen website. Siksika Nation members can get their tickets here.
This is the second annual Every Child Matters game presented by the Calgary Hitmen Hockey Club and Siksika Health Services, this year in partnership with the Aboriginal Friendship Centre of Calgary, Okaki Health Intelligence, and the Blackfoot Confederacy.
The Every Child Matters game is part of a much larger movement of the same name, and is a recognition and commitment to action to ensure that all children know their importance, and to honour those who attended Residential Schools in Canada, their families, and communities.
More photos from today’s press conference: