Traditional Inuit village under construction in Iglulik

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Close to 100 people will be involved in creating a traditional Inuit village on the outskirts of Iglulik over the next few weeks.

Work began earlier this month to build a traditional Inuit village in Iglulik. photos courtesy of Merlyn Recinos/Hamlet of Igloolik

The project, arranged by the hamlet with funding assistance from the Government of Nunavut and the Qikiqtani Inuit Association, will have cultural and economic development components.

The site – located at Iglulik Point, a few kilometres from the community – will feature several iglus, some of which will have multiple domes for various rooms. The largest iglu will serve as a hotel for business travellers to Iglulik. It will be a place where guests can see cultural performers, said Merlyn Recinos, Iglulik’s economic development officer.

Elders will help guide youth and adults in constructing the iglus.

“Kids are going to learn to throat sing and drum dance so we regain that knowledge and those traditions. It’s going to be used to showcase our culture and traditions to people who want to be part of it,” Recinos said. “It all goes back to our traditional sustainable livelihood, which is the hunting, the fishing, the arts. We want to create an economy out of it… selling the fish, selling the country food and also creating employment for people to build iglus and make kudliks to be used within the iglu hotel.”

At the end of March, the community will celebrate the accomplishment with various events at the site such as dog-sledding, sliding and various performances.