Did you know that Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump is a UNESCO world heritage site? One of the oldest and best preserved buffalo jumps in the world, it’s a legacy of a culture over 10,000 years old. The interpretive centre building is also amazing – it received a Governor General’s Award for Architecture in 1990 and contains extraordinary displays and exhibits. Take a road-trip this summer and discover Alberta’s vibrant and thriving First Nations’ heritage.
Two Reasons to Go This Week
1. National Aboriginal Day (Saturday, June 21)
National Aboriginal Day recognizes the unique heritage, cultures and contributions of First Nations, Inuit and Métis people in Canada. On Saturday, June 21, mark the day with a guided tour of the interpretive centre and take a short, incredibly scenic hike to the jump; sample delicious Blackfoot delicacies; and don’t miss the superb program of First Nations performers drumming and dancing on the plaza. This year, you can also experience a special display by the Alberta Birds of Prey Foundation.
National Aboriginal Day celebrations also include an opening prayer by a Blackfoot Elder, a flag raising song by the Blackfoot Drum Group, traditional games demonstrations, First Nations arts and crafts and storytelling. On June 21, you can catch a shuttle from the parking lot to the buffalo jump site.
2. Flying Buffalo Project (Wednesday, June 25)
On Wednesday, June 25, catch a truly unique sight as bison take to the skies at Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump. The Flying Buffalo Project features kites made of canvases painted by some of the most beloved and talented First Nations artists in Canada and the United States.
Organized by SkyWindWorld, the Flying Buffalo Project visits North American buffalo jump sites as part of its quest to highlight the historical importance of the buffalo, buffalo jumps and to promote First Nations art. The project first visited Head-Smashed-In last year, and we expect to see another dozen artists’ work take to the skies this year.
When: National Aboriginal Day is Saturday, June 21. The Flying Buffalo Project is Wednesday, June 25.
Where: Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump is located 18 kilometres northwest of Fort Macleod on Secondary Highway 785.
Admission: is $10 for adults, $22 for a family (two adults and their children ages 7 to 17), $5 for youth (ages 7 to 17) and $8 for seniors. Children six and under are admitted free.
Weather: In case of inclement weather, drumming and dancing will take place inside the interpretive centre; the kites of the Flying Buffalo Project will also be displayed indoors.