The Calgary Maple Festival des Sucres is produced by the Association canadienne-française de l’Alberta, Calgary chapter (ACFA Calgary), a non-profit organization whose mandate is to promote the interests and ensure the holistic development of the Francophone community.
Introduction Inaugurated in 2002, the Calgary Maple Festival des Sucres de Calgary is an annual winter event held since 2016 at Heritage Park and celebrates the French Canadian, Métis and First Nations cultures, their traditions and stories, while offering a memorable cultural experience in French.
New home for the Calgary Maple Festival des sucres!
Heritage Park, with its peaceful setting, its large heated outdoor tent and its existing facilities will be an ideal place to host the event and the festival goers. www.heritagepark.ca/
The Mission of Heritage Park is to connect people with the settlement of Western Canada. The park shares the stories of the early pioneers who immigrated to the area from all over the world in hopes of making a new life out west. Along with an entrepreneurial spirit, they brought many of their own traditions, both of which have helped shape our identity as Western Canadians.
The vision of Heritage Park is to preserve and share the heritage of Western Canada.
Thus, a partnership with the Francophonie-Calgary in the production of the Calgary Maple Festival des Sucres, aligns perfectly with the mission and the vision of Heritage Park, the new host of the Maple Festival.
Métis activities at the Calgary Maple Festival
The Francophone heritage in Alberta dates back to the earliest days of the fur trade when Montreal traders came to the Northwest region in search of adventure and business opportunities. The voyageurs married Cree women and the first Francophone communities—Métis communities—were established. Missionary orders came and were followed by settlers. In this process, which spanned over 200 years, significant contributions were made to the settlement of the West and the founding of Alberta.
First Nations activities at the Calgary Maple Festival
The Origin of Maple Syrup
The Native Americans were the first to recognize the sap as a source of energy and nutrition. They would use their tomahawks to make V-shaped incisions in the trees. Then, they would insert reeds or concave pieces of bark to run the sap into buckets made from birch bark. Due to the lack of proper equipment, the sap was slightly concentrated either by throwing hot stones in the bucket, or by leaving it overnight and disposing the layer of ice out which had formed on top. It was drunk as a sweet drink or used in cooking. It is possible that maple-cured bacon began with this process. Read more: A History of Maple Syrup
Marie-Thérèse Nickel: Organizing committee manager, government funding, partnerships, community sponsorship, communications and promotions
Zinha Muabi: Logistics and production coordinator
Anne Giguère: Graphic Designer
Pierre-Alexandre Soucy : Activities, exhibitors and stage artists coordinator
Geneviève Cournoyer-Scalise: Communications agent, media and public relations
Marianne Présumey: Pre-ticket sales and box office at the festival
Stéphane Théôret: (Vice-President of ACFA Calgary), media relations