This Pow Wow is a gathering of the Indigenous people of Turtle Island. This includes Indigenous people of North America and Central America. They join together in dancing, singing and drumming and other activities. They are representing various Indigenous Tribes, clans and traditional styles. The Pow Wow is a time of preserving a rich heritage and keeping the traditional ways alive. It is for celebrating, sustaining and bridging the traditions of the Native people. The Pow wow is a time to laugh and have fun, a time to gather with old friends and to make new friends. Pow wow activities are social and recreational, but it also has a deeper spiritual and religious significance.
The word Pow wow has been traced to the Algonquin language. The word originally spelled Pau Wau; meaning gathering for Spiritual Ceremony. The early Colonial settlers thought that the word referred to large gatherings of Native peoples. So, the word for powwow for Colonial Americas became known as a gathering or a meeting.
Originally a Powwow, or celebrations, were held in the spring to celebration the renewal of the Earth. It was common for different nations to come together for this occasion. During these gatherings the Native Americans or Indigenous people would settle differences, form alliances, and trade goods. This was also a time to hold scared ceremonial rituals. For example planting crops, naming children (little ones), adulthood, celebrating the beginning of courting, Weddings, mourning the lose of loved ones, prayers for healing.
Many Pow Wows of today have became about entertaining the public and making money. This is not just for the people who put on the Pow Wow, this also goes for the drums, dancers, flute players, storytellers, other performers, the MC. They want to get paid for going or have a chance to make money in someway. Most times this amount of money they want goes beyond what it coast to travel and stay for the Pow Wow.
We at Honoring of the Elders view Pow Wow like going to church or a church function. Lots of People go to pray, to seek guidance, feel closer to a higher power, the Creator, the Sprite world, to celebrate and participate in ceremonies. They go to learn, to carry on traditions, and to be part of a community of like minded people. A church will not pay you to be there, you go because you want to be there and you are willing to put out whatever it coast to be there. Some people are even willing to donate to a church knowing that the money goes to the upkeep of the church and sustaining the church. It is about belonging and helping other members of the community. We are trying to sustain and preserve the culture and traditions.