Traditional powwow gives public glimpse into tribe’s history, culture

File photo
Dancers don full regalia during a past powwow.

STANDISH TWP. — Community members can see authentic Native American dances and dress and sample authentic dishes at the fifth annual Honoring Saganing Traditional Powwow June 14-15.

Frank Cloutier, public relations director for the Saginaw-Chippewa Indian Tribe, said the powwow gives the tribe a chance to share its history with its neighbors in Arenac County and the surrounding region.

“It’s an opportunity for us to show the general public some of those traditional things that have significant meaning to us,” he said.

The powwow has grown into an event more people mark on their calendars each year, Cloutier said.

“I have a feeling that people are looking forward to it more and more every year,” he said. “It’s something that people are making a family event. I see the same families coming back year after year and bringing more people with them.”

Cloutier said 30 different vendors and traders will be on hand at the powwow, and that traditional food will be available. During grand entry at 1 p.m. on both days of the powwow, and afterward, community members at the powwow will be able to see dancers in full regalia performing various dances.

Cloutier said each dance and style of clothing has a meaning, which the public can learn at the powwow.

“Every style of dance and every style of regalia has those little stories,” he said.

Mascots representing local businesses have also been invited to get in on the dancing action, Cloutier said, as a mascot dance competition is scheduled for Saturday from 2-4 p.m. Other events scheduled for the powwow include a lacrosse demonstration and a hand drum contest Sunday at 3 p.m. A fireworks show is scheduled for dusk on Saturday night.

The gates open at 10 a.m. each day. Admission is $3 for adults and $1 for children. Weekend tickets for adults are $5. The powwow grounds are located at 2750 Worth Rd. in Standish.

For more information, call 800-884-6271.


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