An event to mark the second annual Indigenous Peoples Day in Olympia is set for Monday at Heritage Park.
Last year, Olympia joined a growing number of cities in the country to declare the second Monday of October, which is typically observed as Columbus Day, as Indigenous Peoples Day.
More communities have voted to make the change this year.
“To have that going on all over the nation, it’s like a big thing,” said Noel Parrish of Olympia, a descendent of the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa, “that we’re all connected, as far as kind of healing that kind of old hurt with the Columbus Day.”
This year’s event will be 4-8 p.m. Monday at Heritage Park, near Fifth Avenue Southwest and Water Street Southwest, Olympia. Participants are invited to bring their own drums, songs and stories to share.
About a dozen speakers have said they’ll address a variety of topics, from salmon and clean water to freedom for Leonard Peltier and the pipeline protest led by North Dakota’s Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, said one of the Olympia event organizers, Brian “Raven Redbone” Frisina, the radio host of “Make No Bones About It” on KAOS-FM in Olympia.
“A couple of them will be from Black Lives Matter and Justice for Andre and Bryson,” Frisina said.
Brothers Andre Thompson and Bryson Chaplin were shot in west Olympia in May 2015 by an Olympia police officer. “We’re integrating it all because the struggle is the struggle, and we have that common threat as people.”
According to a poster for the event, speakers will include:
▪ Willie Frank III and Hanford McCloud, both members of the Nisqually Tribal Council.
▪ Nancy Shippentower, Chester Earl and Robert Satiacum of Puyallup Tribe.
▪ Marco Black Sr. of Quinault Indian Nation.
▪ Malika Lamont of Full Circle United.
▪ Crystal Chaplin and Andre Thompson with Justice for Andre and Bryson.