Keeping it traditional

151st White Earth Powwow set for June 14-16

The 151st annual White Earth June Pow Wow gets underway this Friday, June 14 and continues through Sunday, June 16. More than 1,000 dancers and drummers are expected to take part in the Grand Entry (pictured), which is the pow wow's signature event. (File photo)

The 151st annual White Earth June Pow Wow gets underway this Friday, June 14 and continues through Sunday, June 16. More than 1,000 dancers and drummers are expected to take part in the Grand Entry (pictured), which is the pow wow's signature event. (File photo)

The White Earth Powwow always features various styles of traditional tribal dance and dance regalia, from jingle dresses to grass and woodland outfits. This year's Saturday evening dance (always the most popular with the public) is expected to draw several hundred dancers. (File photo)

The White Earth Powwow always features various styles of traditional tribal dance and dance regalia, from jingle dresses to grass and woodland outfits. This year's Saturday evening dance (always the most popular with the public) is expected to draw several hundred dancers. (File photo)

At 150 years and counting, the White Earth Powwow is one of the region's oldest summer celebrations and, as such, it's no surprise that organizers like to keep things traditional.

"It's not a contest powwow," said Missy Fairbanks, one of the event's main organizers this year. "It's traditional, with lots of dancing."

The 151st White Earth Powwow is set to take place next weekend, June 14-16, under the spiritual guidance of the White Earth Reservation pipe carriers, with Vince Beyl and Dennis Hisgun as the masters of ceremonies.

"Vince Beyl is nationally known as an emcee for powwows, and a White Earth local, so we are very blessed to have him with us this year," Fairbanks said.

Beyl and Hisgun will preside over the arena festivities, which get underway Friday, June 14, with the Grand Entry at 7 p.m. Additional Grand Entry ceremonies will take place at 1 and 7 p.m. on Saturday, June 15, as well as 1 p.m. on Sunday, June 16.

However, even before the festivities begin, there will be a pipe ceremony and blessing of the White Earth powwow grounds at noon on Thursday, June 13. All pipes, people and family flags are welcome.

Other festivities associated with the powwow include the choosing of White Earth's royalty: The Princess and Brave contest gets underway at 8 p.m. Friday, and it's open to all enrolled members and descendants living within 25 miles of the reservation's boundaries. The junior title is open to kids ages 8-12, while the senior title will go to a boy and girl between ages 13-17.

Last year's princesses and braves will be honored one more time on Saturday, June 15, with outgoing brave and outgoing princess special dances to take place as part of the afternoon grand entry festivities.

Saturday's events officially get underway at 10 a.m. with the flag-raising ceremony, and after the Grand Entry at 1 p.m., there will be a community feast at 5 p.m.

"We will serve roast beef, mashed potatoes, gravy, wild rice, corn, dinner rolls and dessert," Fairbanks said. "It's free and open to the public. The whole pow wow is open to the public — even if you're not a dancer you can come and watch." 

For full article, go to: DLOnline

Source, image(s), credits & more: DLOnline | Vicki Gerdes