Eagle Lake hosts one of their largest pow wows
Over 1500 people, 31 drums and over 300 dancers attended the 31st Annual pow wow held at Eagle Lake First Nation during the Civic Holiday long weekend.
Many people arrived days before to setup camp by the lake, a bivouac of countless tents stretched along the shoreline to the edge of the arbour on either side. People gathered from many different First Nation communities throughout Ontario and Manitoba, to celebrate, catch up with distant friends and families and to meet new ones.
Saturday opened with exceptionally fine weather. At 2 pm the event started with the Grand Entry followed by a Flag Ceremony where both the Canadian and American flags were raised shortly followed by a traditional song to honour the Veterans’ of both countries.
During the course of the day many traditional songs were sung as a kaleidoscope of dancers in traditional regalia weaved their way around the circle. Amongst the many dances performed were the Crow Hop also many Spot Dances were held for all to participate and the MC invited everyone to “ dance your style.”
A special song was sung to honour the people who are on a healing walk from Mishkeegogamang to Slate Falls as a tribute to those who lost their loved ones in the recent tragedy.
Most of the ceremonial songs were honouring an Elder, the late Joe Morrison of the Kenora area. There were dance pageants held for each category for Little Princess’ and Little Braves, presided over by the Master of Ceremonies Clarence White.
The afternoon ended with a traditional feast with a break then a re-entry for the evening festivities. The highlight of the evening was a Hoop Dance performed by the very talented Rick Penner from Sandy Bay First Nation who received a resounding round of applause.
During the break, many people took in the opportunity to visit the various booths that were selling traditional crafts and supplies and traditional cuisine like Indian Tacos.
Sunday opened again with the Grand Entry, raising of Canadian and American flags and the Veterans’ song. Everyone who attended a residential school was invited to enter the circle while an honour song was sung and each one danced to the special song.
The evening ended with a traditional giveaway. This years pow wow was one of the biggest that has been held at Eagle Lake. There were 31 drums and over 300 dancers registered.
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