Understanding Pow Wows at First Peoples Buffalo Jump
GREAT FALLS -
Summertime is the season of Pow Wows.These rituals are held across the state and are a time for gathering and celebration for Native people.
Visitors to First Peoples Buffalo Jump State Park today were able to learn how to understand and enjoy Pow Wows.
The hour-long program was led by Don Fish, a ranger at the park. He says everyone is welcome to attend Pow Wows, but they are more enjoyable when you understand the tradition and meaning behind them.
“We've had some questions about lately about Pow Wows and if they can go to them or not, so we thought this would be a good idea to educate the non-Natives about the dos and dont's and what to expect,” he said.
What can you expect? Fish says there is lots of singing, dancing, and drumming. People of all ages dance in their regalia, from three-year-olds to people in their eighties, and the songs all have different meanings.
Fish says Pow Wows are also a time for people who live off of reservations to come back and socialize. He goes back to Browning, where he is from, to enjoy the Pow Wow there.
The first Pow Wow of the year in this area was held at the University of Great Falls. That event already happened, but Fish says reservations around the state began their Pow Wows earlier this month. Visitors are welcome all summer long.