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Indiana University 3rd Annual Traditional Powwow

Submitted by Nicky Belle
Added on: September 4, 2013

Notice - This information is for a past Pow Wow.
Status: Active
Aditional Information:

Indiana University
First Nations Educational and Cultural Center
3rd Annual Traditional Powwow

October 26-27, 2013
Willkie Auditorium
150 N. Rose Ave.
Bloomington, IN 47405

Head Staff:
MC: Terry Fiddler, Red Wing, MN
Head Man: Isaiah Stewart, Lawrence, KS
Head Lady: Charlie Cuny, Kyle, SD
Host Northern: Brave Heart, Pine Ridge, SD
Host Southern: Cozad, Hominy, OK
Invited Drum: Chaske Hotain, Sioux Valley, Manitoba

Grand Entry:
Saturday: 1pm & 7pm, Sunday: 1pm

Gourd Dance:
Saturday: 11am, Sunday: 11am


2-Person Handdrum, any style.

Under 18 – Teen and Girls Jingle Special

Under 18 – Teen and boys Traditional Special
All Drums Welcome.
Community meal saturday at noon.

Host Hotels:

Holiday Inn – $99 per night
1710 N. Kinser Pike, Bloomington, IN 4704
There are two ways to book your room:
1) call the Holiday Inn directly at 812-334-3252 and say you need to reserve a room under the “IU Powwow rate” OR
2) click on the e-booking link below and reserve your room online

Comfort Inn – $84 per night
1700 N. Kinser Pike, Bloomington, IN 47404
To book your room: call the Comfort Inn directly at 812-650-0010 and say you need to reserve a room under the “IU Powwow rate


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Event Location: Willkie Hall Auditorium: 150 N. Rose Ave., Bloomington, IN

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Pow Wow Last Update: September 4, 2013

12 Comments – Views: 3039 Views

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Attendance list:
1.Kim MillerMaybe
  1. I really wish you could have it in a bigger room. I enjoy powwows very much but I find it takes a certain element out of what powwows are. Although good, it is too small to really enjoy fully. I am glad however that in no matter how it is presented that the American Indian is being recognized. Thank you for that.

  2. This “could” have been a good event but the lack of parking near this venue was pathetic. If you invite the public to be a part of this pow-wow then you need to have a facility large enough and convenient enough (parking)for them to get into, be able to sit down, and have room enough for the dancers to be able to move about in the dance circle.
    The Gourd Dancing was so brief it wasn’t worth the effort of the dancers to dress for it. Long winded speeches and prayers took most of the time allowed for the dancing that at best maybe 20-25 minutes was all the dancers had. Additionally, one never puts out a blanket during a Gourd Dance, nor is anyone allowed to cross into the circle once songs have started and dancers are active. You need to brush up on the etiquette of what is and isn’t allowed at a pow-wow. Taking notes from Clyde Ellis would help.
    I know an event like this takes a lot of preparation to get it right, but you need to consider what the public expects when they attend something like this and you participants likewise need to be aware of the traditions, rules and customs if you want to have this pow-wow a meaningful yet pleasant event. Good-luck in the future.

  3. Hello my name is Dick King and I attended your Pow Wow last Saturday. The dance area was great until the public crowded out the dancers. I am the Headsman and founder of White Star Gourd Dance Society. Gourd Dance was scheduled from 11:00 A.M. until 12:00 A.M. The singers did not arrive until around 11:15, then there was a very informative speech given by Mr. Cozad on Gourd Dancing followed by a long prayer. I drove over an hour to attend for a brief 20 minutes of Gourd Dancing. Very poor planning for this event. I do thank the committee for the nice lunch for all the participants it was great and well stocked. One other thing I am against any blanket dance, donations, for the drum, being done during the Gourd Dance. I know it is done even in Oklahoma but not protocol in my teachings. I personally honored Clyde Ellis and Mr. Cozad during the Gourd dance. This is our way of contributing to their expenses and having a blanket dance to me is just double dipping for more money. Seems like everything is headed towards the money thing instead of the protocol of the Gourd Dance. If you want to contact me for any information feel free I will be more than happy to answer any questions on the Gourd Dance and the best way to run one. In Friendship, Dick King, Headsman, White Star Gourd Dance Society & Auxiliary

    • For those who are coming to the conversation late, the reply about the “@$$hole!!!” was a response to an obscene comment about gourd dancing posted on this site by a white Boy Scout hobbyist who calls himself “Ben Hunt.” The moderator has removed the original post; we can only hope that “Ben Hunt” and his Boy Scout crew do not embarrass themselves by attending next year’s IU powwow.

  4. We had a good time at the powwow. Will be back next year. A bigger dance area would be great. Thanks to the committee for putting this on. Saw stuff at the dance that you don’t normally see at dances in Indian, that is a good thing. Maybe the people complaining above will take notice and learn some thing to make the other local dances better. Thanks again.

  5. Thank-you Nicky Belle, Brian Gilley, and the First Nations Educational and Cultural Center for sponsoring this dance. I appreciated your efforts, and I felt very welcomed during my 4 days on campus. I wish you continued success as you plan for next year’s dance.

    There were some bumpy moments, but it would help to remember that this is a student-run event, and that the committee is not especially deep with powwow veterans. Was parking a hassle? Yes, but there was a drop-off area, and a free deck 5 minutes away. And yes, the room was crowded, but space on a university campus is always at a premium, and you have to take what you can get. In my estimation, they did the best they could.

    With regard to comments about starting late and having limited time for gourd dancing, Larry Cozad can speak as long as he likes — non-Indians simply do not get a vote on this. Yes, the Saturday session was brief, but during those sets I heard two family songs that brought back powerful and moving memories of very good friends in Oklahoma. The point of such dances isn’t simply to get more and more time on the floor; the important thing is to gather, hear the music, and see friends and relatives. If taking 120 seconds to get dressed for 30 minutes of gourd dancing seems like a bad use of your time, I’d say you’re missing the larger point. If we’d been able to hear only one set of songs, it still would’ve been a blessing. Let’s take the blessings we got and be happy to have received them.

    Finally, to “Ben Hunt” who wrote that gourd dancing is “the open festering pussy sore of a good powwow,” this is indecent and you should be ashamed of yourself. The least you can do is show respect for a tradition that is deeply important to Native people on the Southern Plains. Rather than indulging in language that’s popular with 5th grade boys looking to score points at the lunch table, you should simply keep your mouth shut. Surely it is not asking too much for people to have a civil tongue and to show respect for Native traditions. Here’s an idea, “Ben”: Take a trip to the Southern Plains and tell all the powwow people you stumble across that gourd dancing is “the open festering pussy sore of a good powwow,” and then let us know how THAT goes. In the meantime, stop hiding behind an idiotic name. Informed and thoughtful powwow people deserve to know who you are so that they can avoid you, and so that they can let others know exactly what sort of person you are.

    Again, sincere thanks to the folks who sponsored the dance. I look forward to coming back.

    Clyde Ellis

  6. Wow.

    Some of these comments reinforce what is wrong with taking this dance to new areas. I stay in touch with the headsman of the Kiowa Gourd Clan and he has always been worried about how this dance is reinterpreted out of context.

    The powwow headstaff listed is full of seasoned powwow icons who know the right way to conduct a successful Native powwow. It is too bad and almost shameful to hear negative comments especially the comment from Ben Hunt. Also prayer is an important part of true gourd dancing. We spend a whole day in prayer for our 4th of July gourd dance ceremonies lead by our headsmen. We pray together as the Kiowa Gourd Clan after the first thunder as many other tribes have been taught as well.

    I totally agree with Clyde’s statement, “take the blessings we got and be happy to have received them.”

  7. Clyde- The other day I went to see the 1491’s give a talk at the Eiteljorg. They were talking about people who are “more Indianer than thou.” Made me laugh. 🙂

  8. The identity of the clown calling himself “Ben Hunt” is now known to be one of the self-important gasbags who shows up regularly at the Carolina Indian Seminar. He is emblematic of the reason that I quit powwowing. It’s just tiring being around that sort of stupidity.

    Carolina Indian Seminar principals, are you paying attention?


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