Houlton Band of Maliseets Indians celebrates 43rd annual Metaksonekiyak Community Day

Published: Sep. 12, 2023 at 9:31 AM EDT
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HOULTON, Maine (WAGM) - The Houlton Band of Maliseet Indians hosted their annual Metaxsonekiyak Community Day on Saturday. News Source 8′s Isaac Potter was there and has the story.

Family and friends came out for the Metaxsonekiyak Community Day event. This event is popular in the Houlton Band of Maliseet Indians community.

Clarissa Sabattis, Maliseet Tribal Chief, says “This celebration is really to celebrate us as a people, and who we are, our culture, our traditions, and then to invite everybody to come and learn and just to enjoy this celebration with us.”

There were lots of fun activities included dancing, games, bouncy houses, food and vendors. This year marked the 43rd year of the Metsonekiyak Community Day.

Clarissa Sabattis: “Originally it was to celebrate federal recognition as a tribe, however we have decided to make the change just to celebrate us. We were a nation before there was the United States, and feel like we need to really celebrate ourselves in that someone has told us we were a tribal nation.”

Sabattis says this time of year is always a busy and exciting time in the Maliseet community.

Clarissa Sabattis: “I think everybody is getting ready, they are making new regalia to wear. People are excited about different events that are going to be taking place. The kids really are excited, we have a lot more children this year who have decided they want to dance which is exciting for me and I think everybody. So it’s a lot of preparation going on for at least the week leading up to, but there is a lot more that happens for months to make this happen.”

Sabattis adds what makes the event so special is bringing everyone in the community together.

Clarissa Sabattis: “I think that it just brings all of our community together, and we have tribal citizens that live away and they make it a point to come every year so it brings us all together.”

A celebration in the Maliseet community that looks to grow every year. Isaac Potter News Source 8.