The Canadian Museum for Human Rights hosted a Louis Riel Day celebration packed with music, theatre, and discussion, with activities focused on Louis Riel and Métis rights.

Riel Day

The Festival du Voyageur official family, the Sorin family, opened up the celebrations at the Canadian Museum for Human Rights with music. (Holly Caruk/CBC)

"[Louis Riel] played a really large role in helping found Manitoba as a province. He talked about Métis rights along with French language rights, so I feel like that is something we should be celebrating today," said Christina Stokes, a program interpreter at the museum.

The Festival Du Voyageur official family opened the festivities with a musical performance. The museum staff then put on a short play set in the time of Louis Riel.

Amber Reimer

Amber Reimer said she visited the CMHR to see the beautiful architecture and to hear more about Louis Riel. (Holly Caruk/CBC)

Events on the main floor in Buhler Hall were free to attend. There was also programming throughout the galleries for those who paid admission to the museum.

There was a beading workshop, a Métis rights discussion and local bands played throughout the afternoon.

Museum-goer Amber Reimer was there with her family to take in the museum for the first time. She admitted she didn't know very much about Louis Riel, but came to learn more.  

"It's good to remember because it makes us think about where we came from, and what our nation is built on," she said.

Michael Geith and his wife had been wanting to visit the museum for a while but chose Monday because they wanted to take part in the Louis Riel programming.

The Geiths

Michael and Stephanie Geith had been planning to visit the CMHR for a while. They chose Louis Riel Day so they could take part in the special events focused on the Manitoba founder. (Holly Caruk/CBC)

"We know he was influential in Manitoba and started a resistance and stood up for Métis rights, but we came to learn a bit more about that," he said.

"I think he's an influential Manitoban and it's important to understand what he did for our province and what he did for Métis rights around Canada," said Stephanie Geith.