Mist coming off the water of Koshlong Lake

Land Acknowledgment

As settlers, we're grateful for the opportunity to meet here and we thank all the generations of people who have taken care of this land - for thousands of years.

We will begin your experience at YMCA Wanakita by acknowledging that we are gathering on aboriginal land that has been inhabited by Indigenous peoples from the beginning.

Long before today, as we gather here, there have been aboriginal peoples who have been the stewards of this place.

 In particular; we acknowledge the Anishinabek and Huron-Wendat people.

We recognize and deeply appreciate their historic connection to this place. We also recognize the contributions of Métis, Inuit, and other Indigenous peoples have made, both in shaping and strengthening this community in particular, and our province and country as a whole.

 

The Legend of Kitchikewana

A long time ago, there lived a great warrior Kitchikewana. He was a God to the Wendat Huron Nation. He stood taller than the giant white pines and was stronger than the northern winds.

Although loved by the Wendat people in times of war, during peaceful times he was feared due to his violent temper. To soothe his angry outbursts, the elders decided to find Kitchikewana a wife. The Huron Gods assembled all the eligible women of the nation in hopes of finding him a suitable princess.

Kitchikewana, the son of the Great Spirit Manitou, unwillingly agreed to this arrangement. But his reluctance was short lived when he set his eyes upon the beautiful Wanakita. She was the most picturesque princess in the entire nation and Kitchikewana fell madly in love.

Wanakita shied away from his proposal because her heart was taken by another warrior. Heart-broken, Kitchikewana, in a fit of rage, stomped the ground shaking the earth scattering bears and wolves in all directions and sent birds flying with the winds of his angry screams.

No one could calm the warrior God. Kitchikewana clawed the earth, carving out the five bays of Severn Sound:

  • Penetanguishene Bay
  • Midland Bay
  • Hogs Bay
  • Sturgeon Bay
  • Matchedash Bay

He gathered the earth in his clenched fist and ran the length of Beausoleil Island casting rocks over Georgian Bay, forming the 30,000 islands.

A despondent Kitchikewana trudged deep into the bay and died of a broken heart. The outline of his body can still be seen today, at his final resting place, Giants Tomb.