Kitselas culture is multilayered. Our culture is in our language, our stories, our traditions, our dance, our art, our relations and much more.
Kitselas is one of 14 Tsimshian tribes in BC, seven of which are located in Northwest British Columbia.
The language of the Kitselas people is Sm’algyax, the language of the great Tsimshian Nation, of which Kitselas is part.
In Sm’algyax, Gitselasu (Kitselas) means the ‘people of the canyon’, and refers to the Kitselas Canyon, located in Gitaus reserve, on the Skeena River.
Tsimshian culture is grounded in the adawx (narratives that tell history). Adawx tell about the origins of the world from a Tsimshian perspective. Adawx are stories that have been passed on from generation to generation. They are defined as ‘true tellings’ or ‘sacred history.’
Everyone in the Tsimshian First Nation belongs to a clan or a sub-clan. Kitselas has four main clans:
• Gispudwada (Killerwhale)
• Laxgiboo (Wolf)
• Laxsgiik (Eagle)
• Ganhada (Raven)
Kitselas celebrates its elders and traditions. Many of our members still hunt and fish, and prepare and share meat and food as we did in the past.
Kitselas Dance & Traditional Arts
Offered throughout the year and for special events through the Kitselas Health Department. Sample workshops include regalia making, beading, cedar weaving, etc. Upcoming workshops are announced in the News and Calendar sections of the Kitselas website, on the Kitselas Administration Facebook page and in the Kitselas Connects Newsletter . Contact the Kitselas Health department for more info.
Offered throughout the year through community member Anne McDames, usually at the Elders Centre of Gitaus.
Go to the Kitselas Health Groups for more info about the Gitselasu Elders and the Kulspai Elderberries.