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Saskatoon 'Rock Your Roots' Walk breaks personal record with thousands attendees

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A sea of orange stretched as far as the eye could see along Saskatoon's riverfront as a record-breaking 5,000-plus people took part in the 'Rock Your Roots' Walk on Friday.

The Indigenous-centred event celebrated the diverse cultures of Saskatoon, marking a significant moment for the community.

"We've heard from so many survivors that this is an opportunity to get to walk with all the generations of their family and be seen by the greater community so that community members can show their commitment to truth and reconciliation," said Carrie Catherine, director of Reconciliation Saskatoon.

Cultural displays adorned the path, emphasizing the event's focus on both the youth and elders of the Indigenous community, bridging the past and the future.

(Noah Rishaug/CTV News)

"It's honestly fun, it's nice to be here with my own kind," Jessalyn Keyes, an Indigenous youth said. "It feels like home sometimes when I'm here, and doing this kind of stuff I feel good. I feel more with my culture. I'm not really with my culture, I don't know my language, and this makes me feel more a part of it."

Residential schools remain a painful memory for many, including Rick Daniels, a survivor.

He expressed how meaningful the event was for him.

"With events like this, it shows survivors that people care. They care about our history, they're listening to us about what we as survivors had gone through, and what we have to live with," said Daniels.

This year's attendance was notably larger than in previous years, thanks in part to the participation of thousands of students from schools across Saskatoon on field trips.

The Rock Your Roots Walk was a massive success for its organizers, demonstrating the community's strong support for truth and reconciliation.

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