The day after Thanksgiving has been designated as Native American Heritage Day. It’s been described as a day to reflect and appreciate American Indian history, culture and contributions to society.
This year Congress affirmed the annual celebration by passing the Native American Heritage Day Act of 2009, which President Obama signed into law.California Representative. Joe Baca sponsored the legislation.
According to the 2000 Census, more than 4 million American Indian and Alaska natives live in the U.S.
In a Statement released today, President Obama asked the nation, "to remember how the Thanksgiving holiday began: as a harvest celebration between European settlers and the American Indians that had been
living and thriving on the continent for thousands of years."
The statement went on to encourage Americans to join him, in observing Native American Heritage in order to " understand the rich culture, tradition and history of Native Americans and their status today- and to appreciate the contributions that First Americans have made, and will continue to make to our Nation."
Native American Heritage Day is Friday, November 27th.