Over the course of the Umiyaqtutt Festival in Gjoa Haven, seamstresses met inside the Nattilik Heritage Centre to design new works of art for display. Here, the Minister responsible for Parks Canada, Catherine McKenna, speaks with retired radio announcer and artist Leonie Aaluk, who designed a wall-hanging depicting activities from life on the land. © Parks Canada

Gjoa Haven, Nunavut, held its second Umiyaqtutt (Inuktitut for “Shipwreck”) Festival from August 25 to September 3.

The 10-day Festival celebrations included Inuit traditions and customs such as drum dancing, throat singing, feasting, traditional Inuit games, Inuit tattooing, an Inuit music talent show, as well as an arts and craft market, scavenger hunt, and fashion show.

The Nattilik Heritage Centre was a buzz of activity as workshop attendees joined experienced seamstresses to sew wall hangings or beadings as part of the Needlework Art Collaboration Project. Parks Canada Underwater Archaeologists held presentations at the locale as well.

Closing ceremonies included a community feast, awards for the fashion show and live entertainment.

Elder Susie Konana won first place in the Traditional
Clothing Category for her caribou skin parka with kamiik at the Umiyaqtutt Festival fashion show. © Barbara Okpik – Parks Canada

First place winner in the Traditional Clothing Category was Susie Konana for her Caribou skin parka with kamiik. She received $1000. The Modern Clothing Category first place winner was Salomie Qitsualiq, who received a $1000 gift card from the Hamlet of Gjoa Haven for a seal skin parka design.

The annual Festival was created last year to commemorate the discoveries of the historic ship wrecks HMS Erebus and HMS Terror.