This past weekend, the Sylvan Lake Chamber held their 2023, Mermaid Ball, Business awards ceremony. For the first time ever, they gave out an award for the Indigenous Business of the Year. The winner was Tracey Grienke, the owner of Let Them Play Apparel.
Grienke talks about what it means to her to win this award. “Well, first of all, it's very exciting to have that new category and just to be recognized, I think it's very important for our indigenous youth, or any young entrepreneur, to have a role model and someone to look up to and something to look forward to. So I was very happy. And if I can inspire one Indigenous youth to go ahead and start a business and give them some confidence that’s I want.”
Let Them Play Apparel is now found on Facebook, and you can buy special clothing items at shops around Alberta. Grienke explains the idea behind the brand. “I started with one T-shirt, and I called them educational T-shirts. I wanted to educate people on our beautiful indigenous culture. There are so many negative stigmatisms surrounding it, so I thought T-shirts would be a good way to teach people about the indigenous culture.”
Grienke also talked about how Central Alberta’s attitude toward indigenous people has changed for the better. “Well, it's really changed since truth and reconciliation came out, I think the general public is more understanding why we have so many addiction problems in our community. I think it just gives them some education that we are a healing culture and that we need a little more attention or care, to heal and move on.”
If you would like more information on Let Them Play Apparel, check out the Facebook page or contact Tracey at email@example.com