September 24-30, 2017
For the 5th year, French Canadian Heritage Week is celebrated in Michigan.
The annual resolution was introduced in the Michigan Capitol on September 21st.
In 2013, the Michigan Legislature passed the first resolution making October 4 the first French Canadian Heritage Day.
With the passage of time (5 years) French Canadian Heritage Day seems to have morphed into French Canadian Week (September 24-September 30, 2017).
Many people have asked, why October? Why not St. Anne’s Day or the Feast of St. Jean the Baptist in June, both important days in the French Canadian calendar? While we seriously considered those days, our main objective was to have a day in which as many people as possible could participate. Since Summertime is often filled with family activities and vacation, adding a new, unknown heritage day ran the risk of it being lost in a sea of other important days, like the Fourth of July.
October is at the beginning of a series of Fall ‘heritage holidays’ – homecoming, Halloween, and Thanksgiving in addition to harvest home celebrations and hunting seasons make it a season in which thoughts of home and culture are on the minds of many people and form the basis of community celebrations.
THE HARVEST, HOMECOMING, AND THE RHYTHM OF CELEBRATION
Our goal then is to make French Canadian Heritage Day a part of this rhythm of celebration. There are many opportunities for people of French Canadian heritage to add old/new traditions to their activities, whether it be adding a festive arrow sash to a parade costume, making homey glissants or tourtière a part of their cooking repertoire, or telling a traditional French Canadian tale as part of a trip to a cider mill.
And central to our goal is for this day to be incorporated into the curricula of schools around the state, in particular in areas where French Canadians lived in large numbers, such as Southwest Michigan, in the communities along Lake Huron and in the Upper Peninsula.
However, special events celebrating French Canadian Heritage are often celebrated on other dates as well. Take a look at the following 2016 Rendevous Directory and Map:
For more information, visit the French-Canadian Heritage Society of Michigan website and/or Facebook Page.