This year, for the first time since 1936, the second Monday in October won't be Columbus Day in Minneapolis.
Thanks to a resolution passed last April, the holiday has been renamed Indigenous Peoples Day. There's a bit of work still to be done, however -- at its most recent meeting, the Minneapolis City Council directed staff to work with leaders in the local American Indian community to "review the City of Minneapolis' programs, practices, and policies as they relate to the intended impact of the Indigenous Peoples Day Resolution."
First-term City Council member Alondra Cano led the council's drive to swap Indigenous Peoples Day for Columbus Day.
With regard to last Friday's vote, Cano tells us the idea is "to have the city staff dig deeper with American Indian leaders to find out, what are some of the other policy implications of this change? Do folks want to see this implemented in other ways in addition to just having the name changed?"
"So this is just a continuation of that work, and it's really important to have the American Indian community leading those efforts," she continues, citing easy-to-overlook things such as how the holiday is described on parking meters.
The change has already been implemented in some ways. City-issued calendars, which Cano says council members use as "a bible," already read "Indigenous Peoples Day" for October 13. The change has also been made on city press releases and media advisories.
Staff will work with American Indian leaders throughout the winter before presenting "a report on the recommended practice and policy change recommendations" next May.
And while Minneapolis is officially jointly celebrating Indigenous Peoples Day and Columbus Day this year, Cano says that's just a technicality.
"We are the city are choosing to celebrate IPD in lieu of CD," she wrote to us in a text message. "CD is a federally designated holiday so we can't take it off the books (that would be up to the federal government). We as a city can choose how we communicate about this holiday and what we wish to call it."
On Monday, Seattle voted to follow the City of Lakes' lead and designate next Monday as Indigenous People's Day, so who says the Midwest doesn't set trends?