11th annual Honour Round Dance

January 21, 2017

Hosted at the Bowness Community Association Main Hall (7904 43 Ave. NW Calgary)

A Round Dance is an Indigenous healing and blessing ceremony as well as a social gathering. Pathways Round Dances allow urban Indigenous and non-Indigenous people living in Calgary to participate in cultural traditions and to connect with those interested in the traditional celebrations of Cree/Saulteaux cultures.  Each year this event connects over 1000 people and volunteers, from all communities and backgrounds, in a celebration of friendship, family, and community.

The Round Dance begins with an opening prayer and offering by an Elder, followed by a traditional feast. After the feast, drum groups gather to perform traditional Round Dance songs.  All guests are invited to dance together, moving east to west in the direction of the rising and setting sun. After the dancing, everyone who attends a Round Dance is given a small gift as an expression of thanks from the 'host' clan or family.

This gathering promotes peer support, new connections, and a better understanding of cultural practices which in turn helps to build a thriving community.


Cree Elder, Gordon McGillvery from Saddle Lake, Alberta has helped guide and mentor Pathways in ceremonial protocols and teachings since the inception of our Round Dance in 2004. Following his passing in 2013, Pathways acknowledges the gifts, knowledge and blessings Gordon has bestowed upon our organization, clients and community, and have renamed our event to pay respect to him and to the McGillvery family. For three years, we have hosted the “Pathways Honour Round Dance” in Gordon McGillvery’s honour.  This year, 2017, is the fourth and final year we will host the Round Dance in his honour.