It’s show time as the weather begins to cooperate giving us warm and sunny days. At times, a little too warm for my taste. Last weekend, I felt like I was melting away like the wicked witch in the Wizard of Oz. The humidity was high and there was very little relief from a sun-drenched day. However, this event was so worth the trip.
One of my favorite things to do around this time of year is to experience life searching for weekend day trips. It’s pow wow season across America and I look forward to this event at least once a year.
This past weekend, my husband and I found a Native American pow wow event in New Brunswick, New Jersey, no more than an hour from our home. A pow wow is a “North American Indian ceremony involving feasting, singing and dancing.”
The Dancers and their Regalia
The dancers from various tribes were exquisite and the colors of their regalia amazing. I learned that their regalia and manner of dress is very sacred to each tribe. Some of their native dress has been handmade over a period of time by the dancer or handed down generation after generation. It’s an expression of spirit and has been prayed over and blessed. So if you come in contact with any of the dancers, be mindful and respectful. Do not touch their regalia unless they will permit you to do so. It also represents the history of every tribe which I found very fascinating.
At the grand entry, the dancers formed a huge circle in celebration of the different tribes as they danced around the circle with colorful regalia attached with feathers and beads displaying a wide range of colors.
While they danced to various drum beats, they represented their Native American culture with such passion and enthusiasm. I had the privilege of spending time with a people who are proud of their heritage and showed it as they performed for their audience.
There is a story behind each particular song and dance which made us enjoy it even more as we listened attentively to its meaning. The dancers pranced around in sweeping motions while others at the grand entry took small steps while moving their body to the sound of the drums.
Native American Crafts
During the break, there was an opportunity to purchase various Native American crafts like bow and arrows, Indian blankets, dream catchers, and native american musical instruments etc. I purchased a CD by an artist named Sicanni Purizaca which I met here featuring Native American music which can also be used for meditation. Sterling silver jewelry featuring stones of different colors especially turquoise was also on display and seems to be a staple at almost every pow wow. The jewelry is very beautiful so if that’s your thing, make sure you bring enough cash in order to make your purchase. By the way, some of the artisans will accept a Visa or MasterCard. I never leave a pow wow empty-handed because there is always something one can take home as a souvenir.
TIme for feasting
Are you interested in sampling Native American cuisine? Well there is a variety of food choices available at the pow wow. It is impromptu as you check out the various vendors offering bison, Native American tacos, fry bread, and more. In order to quench my thirst I had some freshly squeezed strawberry juice. As I got to the bottom of the cup, there were nice size chunks of strawberry which added more flavor to my drink. Yum!
If you decide to attend any of these events, it will be more than worth your time. I have been going for several years to the pow wows in New York and New Jersey. In the spring and summer, they are located all over North America. Seek out one in your area, you won’t be disappointed.
Please be supportive of them if they come to your communities. It’s a day you will never forget as you cherish it for a lifetime.