AKRON — The first Monday in October is known as North American First People's Day in the city of Akron.

What You Need To Know

  • The city of Akron celebrates North American First People's Day every year

  • This day honors Native American history, life and culture 

  • Native American speakers shed light on important issues

This is a day to honor Native American history, life and culture. 

While, the city of Akron celebrated this day on Monday, Oct. 4, the nation will celebrate Indigenous Peoples Day on Monday, Oct. 11. 

Dr. LaDonna BlueEye, a member of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma, spoke at Monday night's event at the Akron Public Library.

“In Akron, for us to create the North American First People’s Day is very important," BlueEye said. "We are not taking anything away from another group of people and that is something that is very important to me as a native person, is that belief that there really is enough to go around.” 

At the event, she spoke about murdered and missing indigenous women. 

"There are many hundreds of missing indigenous women and transgender natives . . . and it goes very much under-reported,” BlueEye said. "As an American Indian woman, the third most likely way that I will die is to be murdered, and that is shocking to me that this is our lives and I really do feel like that so many of us that are born on reservation or are from Indian country, in fact, are survivors.” 

BlueEye also opened up about the struggles she faced growing up. 

"It was very high poverty rate, and a lot of the social ills that come with high poverty rates: poor health, violence, alcoholism," she said. "Intertwined with that was also very strong pride that we are survivors of a very long and troubled history.” 

To learn more, you can visit the Walk Portage Path website.