Annual Tony Cote Summer Games kick off
- Kaitlynn Nordal | July 11, 2019
The 2019 Tony Cote Summer Games will be hosted by Flying Dust First Nation from July 14 to 19.
With events including archery, track and field, canoeing, golf, softball, tennis, and cross country, there are many activities for the athletes aged 10 to 18 from the 13 participating tribal councils to showcase their athletic abilities.
Flying Dust Summer Games Manager Clay Debray said an event like this is important because it not only brings the various communities together, but it is a good way for the youth participating to showcase their talent and culture.
Crystal Longman, the Touchwood Agency Tribal Council sport culture and recreation manager, echoed Debray’s thoughts.
“It’s a good way to do something positive and be active,” she said about the event, which she estimates will have roughly 4,00 people involved in one way or another.
Tara Griffith, co-coordinator, coach and fitness trainer for Team File Hills Qu’Appelle Tribal Council believes an event like this is significant because it allows goal setting and sense of pride and support, and chance to be social and meet people they might not have otherwise.
Morris Longman, who is this year’s canoe coach for the Touchwood Agency Tribal council, is more than just a coach. “My job is suicide prevention and I build self-esteem and self-worth. I empower youth and so canoeing, or any sort of athletics empowers youth,” he said. Although their team has won silver and bronze in the past, he is hopeful they can win gold this year.
“Our community and its members are honoured and grateful to participate in the development and achievement of Saskatchewan’s First Nation youth. With the generous contributions from our numerous sponsors, volunteers and partners the community of Flying Dust intends on providing the best available facilities, venues and services to our young athletes as they compete at the games. In many ways there is no greater contribution that we can make than to help Saskatchewan’s First Nation youth to strive to be their best through fair and honest competition,” said Chief Jeremy Norman in a written statement on the events website.
“We were fortunate enough to get the bid to host we’re not taking it for granted we want to make sure that we’re going to provide great games that are memorable for everybody,” Debray said.
This will be the second time in sixteen years that Flying Dust First Nation has hosted the event.
The Tony Cote Winter/Summer Games was started in 1974 by Chief Tony Cote and the Council of the Cote First Nation.