Monday is that time-sullied tradition known as Columbus Day, a popular celebration of Italian heritage that would be better if divorced from the Italian whose name it bears. Last year around this time, I wrote an Idea We Should Steal advocating for an end to the holiday here, and an elevation of both Indigenous Peoples Day and a giant Italian American festival that has nothing to do with Columbus. Cities around the country have done some version of this. Philly, though, is a long way away from such symbolic gestures.
But we do have our own Indigenous Peoples Day, the first Saturday of every October, that is now in its 7th year. It’s a celebration of the more than 4,000 native people living in the city, and the riches their ancestors gave us—with dancing, costumes, food and crafts from several different cultures.
Take a look at this for a glimpse of what you’ll see there (starts in earnest around the three minute mark):
This is not a protest, or an argument—so there’s no need for protestations or arguments. It’s a festival—and everyone is invited.
Saturday October 7th, 10 a.m.-4 p.m., with the grand entrance at noon, free, Bartram’s Garden, 5400 Lindbergh Boulevard.Header photo: Solomon Williams II