Saturday is the third National Day for Truth and Reconciliation with events being held around the region.
The day was created by the federal government to honour the children who never returned home and Survivors of residential schools, as well as their families and communities.
The municipality says municipal facilities, including Town Hall, the rec centre and the Sturgeon Landfill will be closed. Officials add the Every Child Matters flag will also be flown at the municipal office, and the West Nipissing Power Generation Dam will be lit up orange as a symbol of commemoration.
Residential School Survivors will share their experiences at a Friday event at the North Bay Indigenous Friendship Centre.
The event takes place from 10 am to 3 pm and includes lunch and an art show, with everyone welcome.
On Saturday, Nipissing First Nation begins a day of events with a sunrise ceremony in Garden Village.
“We encourage people across Canada if they can’t physically take part, to show your support and be there in spirit,” says Chief Scott McLeod. “Really look at how you can better educate yourself on what has happened in Canada’s history and what we need to do to make sure things like that never happen again. That we make this country a better place for everybody.”
He says the day acknowledges the Truth part of Truth and Reconciliation.
“You can’t reconcile something without acknowledging what has actually happened,” McLeod says. “Also, when you do acknowledge that these things did happen, it creates an environment for the victims to heal and to move forward.”
The opening ceremony is being held at 9:30 am with a walk to sacred fire, wreath-laying ceremony and more.
The closing of the sacred fire and flag raising takes place at 7:30 pm.
Also on Saturday, the West Nipissing Lynx honour Residential School Survivors and others at a home game against Ville Marie.
Players will be wearing special jerseys that will be auctioned off after the game.
Game time is 7:30 pm at the Marcel & Jane Labbé Arena in Sturgeon Falls.