Today, Jaime BattisteParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations and Member of Parliament for sydney–Victoriaand Mike KelwayParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard and Member of Parliament (Cape Breton-Canso), on behalf of the Honorable Steven Guilbeault, Minister of Environment and Climate Change and Minister responsible for Parks Canada, as well as representatives of the Company Saint Pierre and the Parks Canada-Unama’ki Advisory Committee, unveiled the name of a new campground in Cape Breton Highlands National Park. Opening scheduled for July 2022, Cap-Rouge Campground / Mkwesaqtuk Campground will be the first French and Mi’kmaq settlement name in Cape Breton Highlands National Park.
As construction of the new campground draws to a close, Parks Canada has worked in partnership with members of The Society Saint Pierre and the Parks Canada-Unama’ki Advisory Committee to choose a name that will encourage Canadians to discover the full extent of our shared history. The name Cap-Rouge Campground / Mkwesaqtuk Campground honors Indigenous ties to this region and commemorates the Acadian peoples who were expropriated for the creation of the national park in 1936.
Cap Rouge / Mkwesaqtuk Campground will offer visitors a unique opportunity to connect with nature and the Acadian and Mi’kmaq cultural heritage. Mkwesaqtuk is a Mi’kmaq word that describes a place or thing that turns noticeably red. This Mi’kmaq expression would have been used to describe the coastal area that the Acadians later called Cap Rougeon the west side of Cape Breton Highlands National Park. The French and Mi’kmaq names reflect the intent and spirit of Etuaptamumk, also known as the Two-Eyed Seeing approach, which combines Mi’kmaq and Western perspectives. This name demonstrates Parks Canada’s commitment to integrating Etuaptamumk in its cultural heritage and conservation initiatives and projects in Cape Breton Highlands National Park. The collaborative naming process honors the history of the place and provides opportunities to celebrate the cultural and linguistic connections of the Mi’kmaq and Acadians.
Reservations for the Terrain de Camping Cap-Rouge / Mkwesaqtuk Campground will begin today, May 12, 2022 on the Parks Canada Reservation Service for reservations starting July 1, 2022. As the country’s largest tourism service provider, Parks Canada is committed to delivering exceptional and meaningful experiences at iconic destinations like Cape Breton Highlands National Park.
“The government of Canada takes important steps toward reconciliation and commemoration and is committed to ensuring that Canadians have the opportunity to learn about the full breadth of our shared history. In partnership with Parks Canada, the Parks Canada-Unama’ki Advisory Committee and La Société Saint Pierre contributed significantly to the naming of the Terrain de Camping Cap-Rouge/Mkwesaqtuk Campground by Cape Breton Highlands National Park. This name symbolizes a strong sense of shared pride among the partners, and we greatly appreciate the direction, guidance and stewardship of the Acadian and Indigenous communities in the development of this name. »
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations and Member of Parliament for sydney–Victoria
“The government of Canada is honored to have worked in collaboration with the Parks Canada-Unama’ki Advisory Committee and La Société Saint Pierre to select the name of the new visitor offering to Cape Breton Highlands National Park – The Campground Cap Rouge/Mkwesaqtuk Campground. The name is representative of the past, present and future of this national park and reflects the efforts and results of collaboration. At the opening, Cap Rouge/The Mkwesaqtuk Campground will provide visitors with the opportunity to learn about Acadian and Indigenous cultures and heritage, while providing a valuable addition to the Cape Breton Island resumption of tourism this season.”
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard and Member of Parliament for Cape Breton–Canso
“The Mi’kmaq are the original inhabitants of this land, and have been here in our day New Scotland, since time immemorial. We are proud of our history and our culture and we want to share them. I would like to thank and acknowledge the efforts of the Mi’kmaq-Parks Advisory Committee for working on the collaborative name for Cap Rouge/Mkwesaqtuk Campground, as it honors our shared history and provides an opportunity to celebrate the historic cultural and linguistic connections of the Mi’kmaq to the lands we still call home. The naming of this campground also continues to build on efforts begun with our peace and friendship treaties. »
Chief Wilbert Marshall
Head of the Culture, Heritage and Archeology Portfolios for the Assembly of Mi’kmaq Chiefs of Nova Scotia
“The expropriation of Acadian families in the region of Cape Breton Highlands National Park shaped the lives of many families and descendants who still live in the Chéticamp region. The experience of expropriation is a painful part of our common history even if it is only a history. The partnership with Parks Canada is an important step towards healing and an opportunity to tell a greater Acadian story through the creation of this new campground. The French/Micmac name of the new campground Cap Rouge/The Mkwesaqtuk Campground is a testament to our enduring relationship with the region, while the campground itself is a celebration of our Acadian heritage and culture. »
President, The society Saint Pierre
- Cape Breton Highlands National Park is a gateway to adventure in the north Cape Breton Island. Visitors can hike, bike, swim, sea kayak in sheltered bays, picnic in quant coves, and experience friendly local culture in the fishing villages that dot the edges of the park. . There’s a lot to discover and Parks Canada looks forward to welcoming visitors from all over. Canada and abroad this 2022 season.
- Cap Rouge/ Mkwesaqtuk Campground will offer coastal camping with wooded nooks to create a sense of remoteness and privacy, with the convenience of frontcountry camping.
- Beginning May 12, 2022Parks Canada will be accepting reservations for 47 walk-in sites, including 5 oTENTiks.
- In August 2015, flash floods caused breaches in the Chéticamp River watershed, causing significant damage to the Chéticamp campground. After a hydrological study to examine the risk of future flooding, it was decided to close the Bas Chéticamp campground and relocate the site. The Trout stream The day-use area (Ruisseau des Maurice) was then chosen as the location for a new campground.
- The society Saint Pierre is a local organization whose mandate is to promote and preserve Acadian culture and language in the Chéticamp region. They celebrate their 75th anniversary in 2022.
Cape Breton Highlands National Park
Unama’ki Advisory Committee
The society Saint Pierre
Parks Canada Reservation Service
SOURCE Parks Canada
For further information: Kaitlin Power, Press Secretary, Office of the Minister of Environment and Climate Change, 819-230-1557, [email protected]; Media Relations, Parks Canada Agency, 855-862-1812, [email protected]; Brenna Ward, Acting Public Relations and Communications Officer, Parks Canada, 250-299-3957, [email protected]; Crystal Dorey, Director of Communications, Kwilmu’kw Maw-klusuaqn, 902-843-3880, [email protected]; Lisette Aucoin-Bourgeois, Executive Director, La Société Saint-Pierre, 902-224-0234, [email protected]