Tuesday, September 20, 2011
Great Mohican Indian Pow-Wow
This weekend saw Native Americans from across the US converge on the normally quite town of Loudonville for the Great Mohican Indian Pow-Wow. The event was put on by and held at the Mohican Campgrounds, along the banks of the Mohican River in Central Ohio.
Native American people come together each year in Pow-Wow's, celebrating with dance and music, as a way to renew old acquaintances and make new friendships.
Crafts, food, story-telling, tomahawk throwing, educational displays, music and dance were all on the busy schedule of events, repeated many times over the weekend. Highlights of the event were the colorful, energetic dancers.
One of the earliest events of the day was a story-telling session with Lance White Eagle. Besides sharing a number of Indian legends, he also dispelled many of the myths about Indian culture. Many in the audience were surprised to hear that the women were the ones who held the most power in the tribe, with the Clan Mother being able to dismiss the Chief if need be.
The event drawing the most spectators was the Grand Parade with flags including the US flag, POW flag, tribal flags and eagle staffs of all tribes present.
The US flag takes on extra meaning to the Native Americans. For many, the flag represents a time when many of their ancestors died fighting the US government. Now, the flag represents the new country in which the Indian nations reside. Finally, the flag recalls so many of their own who have fought and continue to fight for this country today.
The Grand Parade was led this year by a group of veterans representing most of the armed services. During the ceremony, past servicemen, as well as members of police and fire departments were asked to come out of the audience and parade around the ring with the performers as a special tribute. A good number of them did come down and were each thanked for their service to this nation.
Friday was Children's day and only a few of their fancy dancers performed. Saturday and Sunday were competition days and dozens of fancy dancers competed for $9,000 in cash prizes.
For more information about the twice yearly Great Mohican Indian Pow-Wow, check their website at http://www.mohicanpowwow.com.