Gamètì Handgames tournament postponed due to COVID-19

“It was a difficult decision, but we cannot risk getting our Elders sick,” says Boris Eyakfwo, Gamèti Handgame Committee member.

A photo of Gameti's Annual John D Quitte (Aawaa) Men's Handgame Tournament. (Photo courtesy of Boris Eyakfwo.)

Although it was a difficult decision, the Gamètì Handgame Committee is postponing the annual men’s tournament that was scheduled for March.

Organizers say the postponement of Gamètì’s 4th Annual John D Quitte (Aawaa) Men’s Handgame Tournament comes as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“It was a difficult decision but we cannot risk getting our Elders sick,” says Boris Eyakfwo, Gamètì Handgame Committee member. “They’re our knowledge holders.”

The postponement was posted to social media Tuesday, and Eyakfwo says he’s not sure how people will react.

“Hopefully they understand our decision, especially with the seriousness of the pandemic,” Eyakfwo says.

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Eyakfwo says the decision was tough, as handgames have always been an important cultural event for the community.

“The importance of the tournament is to bring the people together and to practice our traditional games as a Dene community. No matter where we come from,” he says.

Eyakfwo says a new date hasn’t been decided on yet.

A video of a previous handgames tournament held in Gamètì.

About the Author

Luke Carroll
Luke Carroll is a journalist originally from Brockville, Ont. He has previously worked as a reporter and editor in Ottawa, Halifax and New Brunswick. Luke is a graduate of Carleton University's bachelor of journalism program. If you have a story idea, feel free to send him an email at