© 2024 Interlochen
CLASSICAL IPR | 88.7 FM Interlochen | 94.7 FM Traverse City | 88.5 FM Mackinaw City IPR NEWS | 91.5 FM Traverse City | 90.1 FM Harbor Springs/Petoskey | 89.7 FM Manistee/Ludington
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

City considers 'Indigenous Peoples Day'

NOTE: An earlier version of this story incorrectly said Indigenous Peoples Day would "replace" Columbus Day. Columbus Day, a federal holiday, has never officially been recognized by Traverse City. We regret the error.

UPDATE (Jan. 20th, 11 a.m.): Traverse City Mayor Michael Estes has called for a postponement on voting to change Columbus Day to Indigenous Peoples Day, due to the fact that two commissioners will be absent from tonight's meeting.

Traverse City may soon follow in the footsteps of Minneapolis and Seattle by instituting “Indigenous Peoples Day.” The new holiday would be celebrated on the second Monday in October – a day usually reserved for Columbus Day.

The proposal would specifically recognize the long history of the Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians. City Commissioner Jim Carruthers says an appreciation for Traverse City’s Native American history is overdue.

“We put statues of Perry Hannah around," said Carruthers. "We’re always talking about what the white man has done around here but I’ve always scratched my head about why we … don’t have some sort of significant historical monument that represents Native American history … the people that were here first.”

The proposal comes from the city Human Rights Commission and the Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians.

Derek Bailey is a tribal councilor with the Grand Traverse Band.

“I don’t think it’s a move to say someone is better than someone else," said Bailey. "I do see it as an opportunity to bring perspective on our shared history from when Christopher Columbus arrived to where we are today.”

The city commission will consider the proposal when it meets Tuesday night.