This Friday I am very excited to attend my first Hobiyee, which is the Nisga’a new year celebration presented by the Nisga’a Ts’amiks Society and Social City Networking. Organizers have informed me that this will be the first Hobiyee ever celebrated publicly on a scale this grand.
The event will take place at the 5,000-person capacity PNE Agridome on Friday, February 3 and Saturday, February 4, 2012 from 10:00am to 10:00pm each day. Tickets are available at the door or online for $15 per day. Elders, seniors, and youth are $5 per day. Children 12 and under are free.
History of the Hobiyee
The Simgigat-Nisga’a Chieftains – in past centuries studied the celestial heavens. They were knowledgeable in the behaviours of the stars in proximity to the moon which forecasted the weather patterns. They studied the astrology not from text books but by years of observing the heavens.
The Halayt-Simgigat (Spiritual Leader- Chief) studied the “Buxw-laks” moon, The Moon of February. Over time, they observed that whenever the first crescent moon is in the shape of a “Hoobix”- the bowl of a Nisga’a wooden spoon, thin shaped and the ends pointing upward- that in the following seasons the resources of our lands would be plentiful, the oolichan, salmon, berries and various other resources, bountiful.
Hobiyee is about the point in time when our “Gal-ha’ink” Cedar Bent Boxes of the Nisga’a are near empty of their winter provisions and they have begun to ration the last of their provisions. The Nisga’a are hoping and praying for a bountiful season of oolichans (saviour fish) and a fruitful year. So the Nisga’a say, “Hobiyee” meaning “the spoon is full”. – Source
A full schedule of events is yet to be released but there will be performances, dances, artwork, and much more. This is an extremely rare opportunity to experience our province’s deep cultural history and we are very fortunate that the Nisga’a have opened their doors to the public for this momentous occasion. Follow @HobiyeeEvent and @NisgaaTsamiks on Twitter for news and updates.
The Nisga’a Ts’amiks Society was incorporated on November 27, 2000 and its office is situated in the Downtown Eastside of Vancouver. Nisga’a Ts’amiks represents approximately 1,400 Nisga’a citizens whose ordinary residence is within the greater Vancouver, Victoria, Nanaimo regions of BC and provide services to Nisga’a living on Vancouver Island and southern British Columbia from the Pacific coast to the BC/Alberta border.