Cochranites and the three First Nations forming Stoney Nakoda came together to celebrate the first ever Building Relationships Traditional Pow Wow on the National Day of Truth and Reconciliation.

Over a thousand people came to share the day filled with drumming, singing, and dancing, and by doing so, create a greater understanding between the two communities and cultures.

GoodStoney First Nation councillor Krista Hunter found it surreal.

"Who thought that our two communities would come together in such a manner," she says. "Such power and grace in our community, with the dance, with the song and to include our neighbors, the Town of Cochrane."

She admits people were nervous coming into the event, jointly planned by the First Nations and the Town of Cochrane.

"There's a lot of pure curiosity on both sides and a lot of openness because coming in here we weren't sure what to expect. But now, they're allowing us to do what we do best, to share and sing and dance. The hospitality that Spray Lakes has given us, I really applaud. It hits my heart. My emotions will come later."

Cochrane town councillor Susan Flowers was among those working tirelessly to help bring it all together.

"It's absolutely been fabulous," she says. "Cochranites came out to see the pow wow to learn, build relationships, and get educated on our neighbors and all the history involved with the Indigenous community."

It was kicked off with a grand entry, followed by a prayer and welcome. Dancing, drumming, and singing filled the afternoon and spilled into the evening. People from both Stoney Nakoda and Cochrane were invited to participate in an Owl Dance and the day concluded with a round dance.