Each year the Puyallup Native American Tribe hosts a pow wow in celebration of Northern American Native culture. People join in competition with one another for best dressed, dancing prowess and drum circles. Puyallup, USA. 04/09/2010
The modern pow wow is where both native and non-native people gather together to dance, sing and socialize all the while honoring the Native American culture. This year's Puyallup tribe gathering was hosted at Chief Leschi High School in Puyallup, WA.
Men, woman and children were dressed in an array of outfits ranging from a play on the traditional to nearly identical replicas. A few people pictures wore sashes from previous year's contests delineating themselves from other participants.
The excitement was palatable in the air as people grouped together and changed into their ceremonial garb. Children bounced about as parents and older relations did their best to prepare them before the grand entrance, a small group of Native American veterans holding flags on long poles.
Drum circles all around the enclosed area set the pace for the gathering with traditional chants I've grown up hearing. Men, women and children gathered to the center of the enclosure and showed their best in attire and dance. Men swaggered in warrior stances, women majestically jumped and children mimicked their elders in an even more energetic display.
Despite the amount of participants this year, the number of elders are thinning and the overall feel of the gathering was the question of whether or not it would be held the following year. Small cultural events such as this one are hard to come by and deserve more recognition and funding than they presently have.