Over 60 dancers perform at Creston high school mini-powwow

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Lower Kootenay band Chief Jason Louie.

Lower Kootenay band Chief Jason Louie.

On May 18, Prince Charles Secondary School held its second annual mini-powwow. Although it was a mini-powwow, the event had over 60 dancers for both the morning session and the afternoon session. This powwow was open to everyone and was mainly visited by the elementary schools of Creston along with classes from the high school. This mini-powwow is set to be a way for the high school to experience Aboriginal Day, since classes are usually out before June 21.

At the powwow, there were six different types of dancers. Under the men’s category there were chicken dancers, traditional dancers and grass dancers. Under the women’s category there were fancy dancers, jingle-dress dancers and traditional dancers.

At this powwow, three women were honored because of their contribution to the Aboriginal Education Program. These three women were Shelley Jacobs, Doris Corbeil and Josie Ahearn.

Last year at the first mini-powwow the school had, it was stated that the powwow should have a flag. The following year a flag contest was held, and was opened to all the schools of Creston. The winner of the flag contest was Jordan Louie. His design won and was created into an actual flag that is now the flag that will be used at every powwow the school will hold. He, too, was honored for his contribution to the powwow.

This powwow also allowed for people to experience what happens at the Lower Kootenay Band powwow that occurs during May long weekend. The mini-powwow consisted of intertribal dancing, where anyone in regalia or not could go out and dance. It also included a fun round of musical chairs and a demonstration of dancing by one of the fancy dancers.

Marking its second year with a big success, it is for certain that this event will carry on for many, many years and will most likely expand. Big thanks goes out to the Aboriginal support workers for dedicating their time along to the program and event, the drummers that gave us both beautiful music and dedicated their time to play for us and to all the dancers that wore their colorful regalia and participated in the intertribal dances and grand entry. I can say that I’m definitely looking forward to next year’s mini-powwow.

— JENNIE J.