Mattawa Museum will be Opening Soon!

Opening Day is May 18th 2022

It has been a long two years but now we find ourselves ready to discover and rediscover this beautiful region of the province. We have an exciting season planned at the Mattawa Museum.

Come join us for some exciting activities to kick off the 2022 season.

Wednesday, May 18th – Opening Day – Marcel Labelle will be on-site setting up his working station for the Canoe Build and will do a smudge.

Friday, May 20th – from 2pm-4pm – Karole Dumont Beckett will be on-site for a book signing.

Saturday, May 21st at noon – Smudging Ceremony with Marcel Labelle. Drumming & singing ceremony by Marcel’s daughter, Janique.

Follow our Museum Calendar on this website throughout the season to be aware of events and exhibits.


Canoe Build – The Gift

We are honoured to partner with Marcel Labelle, Mahigan, a Metis Elder from Mattawa. Marcel is a Master Birch Bark Canoe builder.  This summer he will be building a 20-foot birch bark canoe on-site at the Mattawa Museum on Explorer’s Point in Mattawa. This is an historical site where our Indigenous ancestors would have met the first French voyageurs.  The birch bark canoe was the gift the Anishnabae would have shared with those first visitors. We invite you to visit him as he builds and teaches about this unique art form. You will see and learn about the harvesting of the materials and the tools he uses to build the canoe. Take the time to ask questions, take pictures and share this unique experience with others. His book, The Knowledge Canoe will also be available.

“I was asked which indigenous language I speak.  I speak Michif but I am fluent in a more universal language, the language that the forest and all its inhabitants; flora, fungus, fauna and animal speak. It is one that humankind must relearn if we are to have a future on our Mother Earth.”  Mahigan

This four-month Live History Exhibit will begin Saturday, May 21st.  At noon there will be a smudging ceremony with drumming/singing.  Then Marcel will launch a very special teaching canoe. It is named Birth of a Nation and it will be on display at the museum for this 2022 season.

We will have some Mini Birch Bark Canoe building workshops over the summer, as well as Mini Paddle painting, the paddles made by the woodworking class at F.J. 

The expected launch date for this new canoe, aptly named The Gift, is expected during the first week of September, but as Marcel reminds us, that will be up to Mother Earth.

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