The annual pow-wow was held last weekend at the Nipissing First Nation grounds nearby. I went with a friend to enjoy the dancing, the drums and the fun this festival beckons us all to share. As always, the intricately designed and hand sewn regalia was amazing to see. We asked this gentleman if we could take his photograph - to show both sides of the beautiful regalia he was wearing.
The grounds had been recently reseeded, so the area around the central arbor where the drummers are situated was a carpet of soft new grass. Usually, the dance circle is made ready for all the dancers by the grass dancers who press the tall grass down with their feet, making the area look like a sort of "crop circle". This year, it was ready to go!
Around the periphery are benches to sit on and portable snack wagons where you can buy hot dogs, burgers and the best thing of all: fry bread! This is made with something like doughnut dough, but not so sweet and much lighter. It's done in a deep fryer; the resulting mound of goodness is cut and served with cinnamon sugar or the local fave, baloney and fried onions. YUM!!!
Vendors in small tents displayed everything from wolf pelts to silver jewelry and in one of the booths was my friend Chad Solomon. Chad has been doing a really fine cartoon series based on his characters Rabbit and Bear Paws. On his own, Chad has produced books, videos and teaching materials and is constantly on the go. He gives talks, demonstrations, teaches art and native history and is one of the most hard- working cartoonists I know. He recently had puppets made of some of his characters and I wanted to show them to you along with some of his many publications. If you are interested in his work please check out his website at: www.rabbitandbearpaws.com.
We left the event just before it was over and it was fun to walk up the wooded lane from the pow-wow grounds to the car, listening to the drums. I love that sound. It's a heartbeat, and it keeps so many traditions alive!
About the only positive thing that I get out of it that she doesn't have to drive very far to be an idiot.