Moose River Hospitality and Heritage Association

More than 350 Years in the Making: From Time Immemorial to 1673 to 2023

More than 350 Years in the Making: From Time Immemorial to 1673 to 2023 – Our Vision & Committee

2023 will mark the 350th anniversary of the establishment of Cree-European relations and the founding of Moose Factory as a permanent settlement. In 1973, Moose Cree First Nation leaders and members worked with other Moose Factory residents to plan a 300th anniversary celebration that had a big impact on our community. The MRHHA’s objective is to follow their example and leverage the 350th anniversary to draw attention to the much deeper and broader history of our community and region, and to achieve community and economic development goals that integrate and impact education, heritage and language restoration, reconciliation, traditional and contemporary cultural and artistic development, health, etc. In order to advance this broad objective, the MRHHA aims to build a close working relationship among its jurisdictional, organizational, business, and individual members, as well as other local and regional organizations and other partners and participants across Canada and across the Atlantic.

After a public meeting in January 2020, the MRHHA established a 350th Planning Committee, open to all community members in Moose Factory and Moosonee. Co-chaired by Bernice Kapashesit and Virginia Barter, this committee is holding regular planning meetings, that are always open to the public and new members, as well as larger public information meetings.

We are also holding lead-up events and activities that celebrate or foster interest in our history, heritage and culture.  Whenever possible, we are partnering with other organizations on existing or new events and activities. We are inviting local and regional organizations (non-profit, private and public) appoint a representative to our 350th planning committee, and to identify annual or stand-alone events, initiatives or activities that could be linked with, and supported by, the More than 350 initiative, and which could be given a More than 350 flavour or component. For example, at a hockey tournament, we might sponsor an evening of storytelling with old-timer hockey players, and a slide show of hockey photos. We have funding available to help support your events and activities.

If you want to volunteer, join our committee, propose an idea, or seek support for an event or activity you are planning or would like to see planned, please contact us. 

In January 2023, the MRHHA will launch the 350th anniversary year, with the goal of giving a 350th flavour to all the existing annual events and activities. In this regard, the hope to also amplify these existing events and activities, by supplementing them or merging them with other new events and initiatives. These goals include: bringing over a group of musicians and others from the Orkney islands; hosting an international conference on the place of Moose Factory within local, regional, national and global history; sponsoring a documentary film and the publication of a book and  commemorative-year memorabilia; developping our website and especially an online archive/library; sponsoring youth and student engagement activities and initiatives, especially with the engagement of local schools. Finally, the goal is also to restore key heritage buildings, such as St. Thomas Church in Moose Factory, and the Revillon Frères building in Moosonee, with a view to making them available to the entire community as heritage venues. 

More than 350 Planning Committee

  • Bernice Kapashesit (Co-Chair)
  • Virginia Barter (Co-Chair)
  • Cecil Chabot (MRHHA Executive Director and Heritage Commitee Co-Chair)
  • Geraldine Govender (MRHHA Heritage Committee Co-Chair) 
  • Laurie Sutherland (MRHHA Community Coordinator)
  • Devin Rickard (MRHHA Heritage Conservation Apprentice)
  • Fred Rickard
  • Paula Rickard 
  • Kim Cheena
  • Terrence Sutherland
  • Lisa Sutherland
  • Thomas Blampied
  • Sheila Annette Wheesk
  • Stan Wesley
  • Christine Rickard
  • Paige Wong
  • Clint Hamilton
  • Sheila Williams
  • Martha Sutherland
  • Elaine Jeffries
  • Lucy Faries-Tapas