Weekend powwow a celebration of culture, life

The 21st annual “Learning To Walk Together” Traditional Powwow welcomed hundreds of people Saturday inside Northern Michigan University’s Vandament Arena.

We’re happy to see this great tradition continue in Marquette.

In a world that is often criticized for its Hollywood obsession and celebrity-focused culture, events like this breathe a breath of fresh air into a community.

Each dance featured in the Powwow is deeply rooted in tradition and history. The clothing worn by each dancer is chosen with care and, according to the flier handed out at this year’s Powwow, is considered the most precious item of clothing.

Likewise, the food and the feast is steeped in tradition, with a spoonful of food from each prepared dish brought to the fire outside prior to feast time.

Powwow elders, singers and dancers eat first, partaking of a number of delicious dishes, from bison stew to fry bread.

The powwow is a gathering to celebrate life. It is a time to commune with neighbors and friends, to foster that sense of community that we all cherish. Just like its namesake, it’s also a time to learn as young Native Americans learn of their culture and traditions from elders.

We’d like to say thank you to the NMU Native American Student Association for hosting the annual event, and for all the veteran dancers, drummers and singers who helped teach everyone in attendance about the rich history of Native American culture.