HOLYOKE, Mass. (WWLP) – Holyoke Community College (HCC) announced Monday their plans to honor and celebrate Native American Heritage Month which started on the first.

Tuesday November 16th,  HCC will host a Zoom event highlighting the history of violence against Indigenous women at noon. The day will also feature a land acknowledgement by David Brule, chairman of the Nolumbeka Project and member of the Nehantic Tribal Council. A land acknowledgement is a traditional custom recognizing that Indigenous people were the original stewards of the land on which the United States now resides.

On Wednesday, guest speaker Anthony Melting Tallow, a member of the Siksikaitsitapi Blackfoot Nation, will talk about life as a two-spirit Native American; this will be followed by a mini pow wow featuring traditional Indigenous drummers and dancers.

The commemoration will be followed on Monday, November 22nd, with Rock Paint, a guest speaker who will demonstrate the traditional Indigenous ceremony of smudging. the act is used for purifying and cleansing the soul through the burning of herbs.

Those interested in registering for the events can do so online at hcc.edu/nahm. Everyone who registers in advance to attend Wednesday’s in-person events will be eligible to win a free pair of Airpods.

All on campus events will be viewable on Zoom.