National Indigenous Peoples Day

To acknowledge and support National Indigenous Peoples Day, check out our resources below to learn more about Indigenous culture and history!
We respectfully acknowledge that The Reach is located on Stó:lō Téméxw, in the unceded Stó:lō territory of the Semá:th and Mathxwí First Nations.

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Special Combo Offer- Today only!

Semá:th Xó:tsa (Sumas Lake) book and Skwó:wech (Sturgeon) culture kit available at The Reach for only $15 ($22 value)

Learn more about the history of Semá:th Xó:tsa, and connect history with art by making your very own toy sturgeon (the lake was once filled with lots of sturgeon!)

About Semá:th Xó:tsa

For thousands of years, Semá:th Xó:tsa was a large lake that existed between Sumas and Vedder mountains in the unceded territory of the Stó:lō people, in what is now known as the Fraser Valley. The lake was central to cultural, spiritual, and physical wellbeing of the Séma:th people (Sumas First Nation) and surrounding Indigenous communities. Between 1919 and 1924, settlers argued the agricultural capacity of the region would be improved by draining the lake and lobbied government to do so.

Read Semá:th Xó:tsa: Sts’ólemeqwelh Só:tsa / Great Gramma’s Lake online

The children’s book was published by The Reach in fall of 2020. It recalls a time when the lake was thriving, using memory and story to allow the lake to live on today. The project is illustrated by Xémontélót Carrielynn Victor and co-authored by Chris Silver, Carrielynn Victor, Kris Foulds, and Laura Schneider. Read the book online here

Read the book along with our video!

Watch the video to practice your Halq’eméylem pronunciation with Lumlamelut Laura Wee Lay Laq

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Learn about the art of Stó:lō master carver Claude “Rocky” LaRock

Claude “Rocky” LaRock is a master Stó:lō carver based in Sts’ailes (Chehalis) in the Fraser Valley. LaRock’s practice is inseparable from his Stó:lō identity and relationships to community, family, and land. He is committed to experimentation, incorporating contemporary elements and techniques, creating carvings intended solely for display, and using a unique visual language to express contemporary, global concerns through the lens of a Stó:lō cosmology.

The Reach 2021 exhibition “E’yies’lek Rocky LaRock: The Wild Inside” showcased his skills, technique, and stories of traditional hand-carving. Watch the video below to learn more about LaRock.

 

Watch “A Story of Sasquatch” to learn more about LaRock’s incredible carvings

Visit our YouTube channel to watch the other videos in the Rocky La Rock series!

Read the book E’yies’lek Rocky LaRock: The Wild Inside

Purchase the book from The Reach for $10 or read online here!

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Learn about Stone T’xwelatse

Stone T’xwelatse is an ancestor of the Chilliwack (Ts’elxweyeqw) – one of the First Nations that comprise the Stó:lō Nation. Born as a man thousands of years ago, he transformed into a four-foot-high granite statue as punishment for mistreating his wife.

Through his transformation he was to give lessons to the people on how to live together in a good way. For the Stó:lō, Stone T’xwelatse is a beloved ancestor; a stone man with a living soul.

Over one hundred years ago, Stone T’xwelatse was taken from Stó:lō territory. He was more recently discovered in Seattle in the collection of the Burke Museum of Natural and Cultural History. After a 14-year campaign, Stone T’xwelatse was repatriated back to the Stó:lō in 2006.

In 2011, Man Turned to Stone: T’xwelatse was exhibited at The Reach.

Learn more at the T’xwelatse website, or watch the documentary T’xwelatse is Finally Home

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Learn about  Indigenous Rights and Titles to Land

In 2020 The Reach hosted a screening of the documentary Reserve 107, which tells the story of the former reserve of the Young Chippewayan First Nation in the village of Laird, Saskatchewan.

Watch the panel discussion below to learn more about issues of land claims and reconciliation between Indigenous and white settler communities in the context of the Fraser Valley. The panel discussion includes Chief Dalton Silver of Sumas First Nation, Chief Andrew Victor of Cheam First Nation, Dr. Keith Carlson and Dr. Wenona Hall from the University of the Fraser Valley, Bridget Findlay from the Mennonite Central Committee of BC, and The Reach’s Curator of Art & Visual Culture Adrienne Fast.