The Festival of Native Arts provides cultural education and sharing through traditional Native dance, music, and arts. The Festival continues the University of Alaska Fairbanks student-led tradition that began in 1973 of bringing together artists, performers, and performance groups in a celebration of Native cultures.
"Indigenous Peoples Day is a way for Alaskans to acknowledge that we are not ignorant of history, forced assimilation and the injustice inflicted upon first peoples," said Sean Asiqłuq Topkok, an assistant professor at the UAF School of Education and member of the celebration planning committee. "It’s also a step forward toward healing the trauma from colonization that still persists today. For the University of Alaska, this holiday celebrates diversity and the distinct Indigenous cultures and traditions that help make one Alaska."