News from the Friends of Nose Hill – July, 2022


On Nose Hill, there was a recent Medicine Wheel Walk with Drum and Sharing Circle, led by Cheryle Chagnon-Greyeyes, who is a proud Nehiyaw Iskwao (Cree Woman). A member of Muskeg Lake Cree Nation, Saskatchewan, Treaty Six, her ceremonial gifted Cree name translates to “Healing Woman Who Walks Far.” Mother of two and “Kokum” (grandmother), she is a member of Storytelling Alberta and Storytellers of Canada. She worked with CBC English Radio and Television, the National Film Board of Canada, National Aboriginal Health Organization, Awo Taan Native Women’s Shelter, and the City of Calgary.


Sacred Places in Nose Hill:

The Nose Hill Siksikaitsitapi Medicine Wheel was built by Blood Tribe members in 2015. It forms the Siksikaitsitapi logo, a representation of the Blackfoot Confederacy, and exists on traditional Blackfoot territory. The buffalo rubbing stone on Nose Hill has spiritual significance. A former City Council approved the Native Heritage Site. These are only a few of the sacred places in the park.

Sacred Herbs in Nose Hill:

Sage is important in all Blackfoot, Stoney, and Cree ceremonies. There are several varieties, such as wormwood sage, buffalo sage for the Blackfoot, and horse sage for the Cree. “Look-like-A Plume” (in English) is a wind flower burned on a hot coal to relieve headaches. Wild bergamot and the root of fireweed are for healing. Many of the herbs in the coulees were for the use of sweat ceremonies, vision questing, and fasting.

The Sun Dance:

The purpose of the Sun Dance for the Plains Culture was to reunite and reconnect with the earth and the spirits, which usually involves the community gathering to pray for healing. It was an occasion when otherwise independent bands reaffirmed their basic beliefs about the universe and the supernatural through rituals of personal and community sacrifice.