On your mark, set, go: a preview of 2018 sporting events
- EFN Staff | February 06, 2018
2018 will be a fun packed year full of Indigenous sporting events across the country. From the Tony Cote Winter and Summer Games, the Federation of Indigenous Sovereign Nations (FSIN) annual hockey tournament to the Masters Indigenous Games – athletes will have something to look forward to this year.
This will be the first year the formerly known Saskatchewan First Nation Winter/Summer Games will be known as the Tony Cote Winter/Summer Games. During last year’s summer games at the closing ceremony held in Regina, an announcement was made to rename the games to the founder of the popular sporting event. The 2018 Tony Cote Winter Games will be hosted by Cumberland House, Red Earth Cree Natoin and Shoal Lake communities but will be held in Saskatoon during the week of April 1-6, 2018.
Lyle Daniels, who is the 2018 Tony Cote Winter Games manager, said based on previous years’, an estimate of 5,000 athletes will be participating in the upcoming games.
“We’re going to have a significant amount of entertainment [and] a cultural entertainment village,” he said. “One of the coolest things I’m going to change this year [for] the medal ceremonies will be done in the evening and not at the venues but where the athletes are going to be fed.”
Saskatoon Mayor Charlie Clark said they are pleased Saskatoon will serve as host city for the Tony Cote Winter Games.
“We’re very honoured the Saskatoon has been [chosen],” said Mayor Clark in the event poster. “Sport is a wonderful way for people to come together for a shared experience and to help build community.”
Daniels said the athletes will be fed in the auditorium at the Alliance Church in Saskatoon.
The 2019 Tony Cote Summer Games will be hosted by Meadow Lake Tribal Council (MLTC) who were the overall summer games champions last year earning 958 points taking home 20 gold, 19 silver and 20 bronze medals.
The 10th Annual Saskatchewan Aboriginal Indoor Track & Field Championships are in Saskatoon on March 2nd and 3rd at the Field House. Early bird deadline is February 8 and the registration deadline is February 22 for Pee Wee, Bantam, Midget and Youth categories.
The FSIN annual hockey tournaments held in Saskatoon for adults is April 20-22 and the FSIN Youth Hockey Championships is set for April 27-29 at the Jemini & Agriplace. Another hockey event called
the National Aboriginal Hockey Championships will be held from May 5-12 in Membertou First Nation, Nova Scotia.
The 2018 Masters Indigenous Games will be the first event of its kind in North America. They will be held in Toronto on July 12-15. These Games will provide an opportunity for Indigenous adults to compete against others around the world in a variety of contemporary and traditional sporting activities.
In addition to the various Indigenous sporting events, the Saskatchewan Parks and Recreation Association (SPRA) is piloting the first Indigenous Fitness Leadership Certification Program in Saskatchewan over three weekends in April and May 2018. The program will train individuals committed to an active lifestyle who want to learn how to motivate and energize others in their community. Participants will earn nationally recognized certification, enabling employment in the fitness industry. It will be held in Saskatoon with support from the Saskatoon Tribal Council.
“This is a great opportunity. This SPRA Project will benefit us as Indigenous People in two main areas: building our human capacity and promoting health and fitness,” said Chief John McNab of George Gordon First Nation in a media release.
The program’s goal is to empower Indigenous People to deliver safe, high quality fitness programs in their communities that are culturally relevant and incorporate traditional learning methods. Participants will be able to provide guidance and feedback on the program, ensuring that it meets the fitness and physical activity needs of Indigenous People.
Registration for the program opens February 1, 2018. An application package will be available on the SPRA website. Individuals willing to work towards becoming a certified fitness leader trained in group exercise content, who can be recommended by members of their community, are encouraged to apply.
Lots of opportunities to stay active in 2018!