Your Perfect Manitoulin Island Pow Wow Weekend Itinerary

This four-day route makes it easy to plan a summer long weekend road trip to one of Manitoulin Island's eight annual Powwows.
indigenous drumming

Culture, community, food, dancing, music, tradition, and regalia—it's Pow wow season! Manitoulin Island - Mnidoo Mnising is home to six First Nations, with neighbouring Whitefish River First Nation located nearby on Birch Island. Each hosts an annual Powwow throughout the summer months. 

From the Wiikwemkoong Traditional Powwow at Thunderbird Park in June to the M’Chigeeng Jiingtamok on the September long weekend, there are many opportunities to experience the cultures, traditions, and joy of the Indigenous people and communities on and around the Island.

No matter which Powwow you choose to attend this summer, while in the region you'll have the chance to enjoy luxurious glamping domes, artisanal chocolate, stunning craftwork and illuminating cultural experiences on this four-day route featuring the best of Manitoulin Island's Indigenous-owned attractions. Need more inspo? Check out these Indigenous-owned places to eat, sleep, shop and play on your trip to Manitoulin Island.

First Weekend of June
Aundek Omni Kaning Traditional Powwow

Located on the North Channel on the shore of Manitoulin Island, this is the first Manitoulin Island powwow of the season each year, taking place the first weekend of June. Grand Entry is at 12 pm and 7 pm on Saturday, then at 12 pm on Sunday. Admission is free and welcome to all.

Aundeck Omni Kaning, 1300 ON-540, Little Current

Second Weekend of June
Sheshegwaning First Nation Traditional Powwow

Closer to the western coast of Manitoulin Island, you'll find Sheshegwaning First Nation just off Highway 540, five kilometres past the hamlet of Silver Water. Its traditional powwow is held the second weekend in June. Grand entry is at noon on Saturday and 1 pm on Sunday.

Sheshegwaning Pow Wow Grounds, Sheshegwaning Road, Sheshegwaning, ON

Third Weekend of June
Wiikwemkoong Unceded Territory Traditional Powwow

The Traditional Powwow is held every year on the third weekend of June at Thunderbird Park in the heart of the village of Wiikwemkoong. Each year, it is planned and hosted by one of Wiikwemkoong’s satellite communities: Buzwah, Kaboni, Rabbit Island, South Bay, and Murray Hill. It's a celebration of community spirit through song, dance and traditional foods. Visitors are welcome to witness this traditional celebration of the Anishinaabek people.

Wiikwemkoong Unceded Territory Traditional Powwow, Nimkii Bineshi Kaaning (Thunderbird Park), Wikwemikong, ON

First Weekend of July
Sheguindah Annual Jiingtamok

Sheguiandah First Nation’s annual traditional powwow is held each year the first weekend in July at the community’s waterfront powwow grounds. Food and crafts vendors are nestled among the trees and the ambience of this event is one of calm tranquility. You'll find Sheguiandah First Nation on Highway 6, 10 km south of Little Current.

Sheguiandah Annual Jiingtamok, Ogemah Miikan Rd, Sheguindah, ON

August Civic Holiday Long Weekend
Wiikwemkoong Unceded Territory Annual Cultural Festival

The Wikwemikong Annual Cultural Festival is one of the largest, longest running Powwows in Northeastern North America. Grand Entry is at noon each day. Various presentations, workshops, dances and vendors. Wikwemikong Tourism hosts authentic, memorable and engaging experiences at the Cultural Pavilion reflecting the history, cultural lifestyles and traditions of the Anishaabek people of the Three Fires Confederacy-Ojibwe, Odawa and Pottawatomi peoples. The Cultural Pavilion is included with admission to the Annual Cultural Festival.

Wiikwemkoong Annual Cultural Festival, Wiikwemkoong, ON

Third Weekend of August
Wawaskinaga Traditional Powwow

Each year, Whitefish River First Nation holds their annual traditional pow wow on the third weekend in August. It is held below the sacred Dreamer’s Rock at Sunshine Alley. This gathering features traditional dancing, singing and drumming, crafts and food. Whitefish River First Nation is located on Highway 6 about 14 kilometres north of Little Current. The powwow grounds are accessed off Sunshine Alley (which intersects with Highway 6).

Whitefish River Traditional Powwow, Sunshine Alley, Birch Island, ON

Fourth Weekend of August
Zhiibaahaasing First Nation Traditional Powwow

Zhiibaahaasing First Nation is home to the World’s Largest Peace Pipe, the World’s Largest Dream Catcher and the World’s Largest Powwow Drum. The Powwow grounds are right in the middle of the community and easy to find. Grand Entries are Saturday 1:00pm & 7:00pm; Sunday 12:00pm. Feast Saturday Evening; Fireworks Saturday at dusk. Zhiibaahaasing First Nation is accessed through Sheshegwaning, off of Highway 540 five kilometres west of the hamlet of Silver Water. Follow the road through Sheshegwaning to Zhiibaahaasing.

Zhiibaahaasing First Nation

September Labour Day Weekend
M'Chigeeng Annual Jiingtamok

The powwow at M’Chigeeng First Nation is held each year on Labour Day Weekend, the last of the Island’s powwow season. The community’s powwow grounds are spacious and provide lots of room, not only for dancing around the large arbour, but for visiting and enjoying the large assortment of powwow food and crafts that the vendors have on offer. M’Chigeeng’s powwow grounds are accessed from Highway 551 and share the same entrance as the community’s ballpark.

M'Chigeeng Jiingtamok, M'Chigeeng Pow Wow Grounds

About Indigenous Tourism Ontario

Indigenous Tourism Ontario (ITO) is the province’s only dedicated Indigenous tourism organization. ITO focuses on uniting communities, organizations, and industry leaders to support the growth of Indigenous tourism in the region. Visit their travel planning website at www.indigenousexperienceontario.ca.

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