Since a long time I tried to see another pow wow (powwow) in order to add it to our Internet travel guide.
So I was really happy when I read that in Fort Erie a summer pow wow will be celebrated for the first time on the grounds of the old fort. It was named "Gathering at the Waters".
Unfortunately, heavy rain was pouring down when I was getting ready to drive to Fort Erie. For that reason I checked the Internet - no change to the schedule or of the location!
When I arrived at the old fort, not a single participant was there. For that reason I drove to the "Fort Erie Native Friendship Centre". As expected the parking lot was already filled up and many aboriginal people in traditional costumes were busy setting everything up in a hall.
I could not be mad with the organizers, because powwows are not celebrated as tourist attractions but for renewing friendships between the participating native people, to promote culture and tradition by involving the youngsters.
As you can see they enjoyed it - at least those who participated.
A veteran greets the drummers
All the children behaved very well and it was a pleasure watching them
I came 1984 from Europe and I still have serious problems to identify natives. Some of them have even blond hair, others look to me like people from Asia and others are normal North Americans to me.
I learned that they are not healthier than we are - they even suffer more from certain diseases.
Unfortunately, this applies to a good friend who is still young and needs now extensive medical treatment. He never did anything wrong and lived healthy.
Most of the drummers who were also singing appeared in casual clothing.
The drummers were sitting within a circle which was used later by the dancers.
The official opening ceremony was still to co come and the time was used for greetings and exchanging news. Obviously many participants came from the USA.
I was aware that taking pictures or filming was not allowed during the opening ceremony and during other sacred acts.
Some of the ladies introduce themselves. One of them is a princess.
All announcements were done from here.
These announcements were mainly for the dancers and drummers. For that reason the announcer is called "Master of Ceremonies" as I learned later.
I am convinced that the objectives to strengthen the unity between the different groups and to involve the youngsters in preserving traditions was achieved.
Unfortunately, there were so little none native people that the teaching effect to them about native culture was almost nil. I believe it should become another main task to built bridges between both groups.
I did nor carry my cam corder with me, so I had to use my digital camera to make some video clips. Please watch the small movie to get an impression.