Cultural Event Paper

Topics: Native Americans in the United States, United States, Culture Pages: 2 (737 words) Published: January 10, 2010
A cultural event that I have attended in the past that has had a memorable affect on my life was a Native American Powwow. This event takes place every year, Thanksgiving weekend in Tucson, AZ. I arrived in the late afternoon, as the sun was going down. I remember seeing many different types of people, from tourists to the different Native American performers. The physical setting of this particular celebration was outside, and based around, one main circle. Drums were beating so loud, you could feel the pound inside your chest. Different activities were going on all around, such as dancers, vendors, and a huge variety of foods to choose from. The circular dancing arena is known as the arbor, this area is blessed before any of the events begin (Schultz, 2001). This area is considered to be sacred ground, and is respected throughout the entire celebration (Schultz, 2001). The arbor was made of tree limbs and leaves. The four main entries into the festivities were used to resemble the four points of a compass (Schultz, 2001). The dancers entered from the east entrance, and the main announcer was located by the West entrance. Many spectators were sitting on blankets, and some on lawn chairs. The environment was relaxed, and a very friendly atmosphere. The activities included dance and drum contests, different ceremonies, and many different vendors. The crafts were all handmade and amazing. Each piece looked as if it were specially made from the heart. The Native American culture to me felt festive, warm, and very inviting. The dancer’s come from many different tribes. Their faces were painted, and their costumes consisted of beautiful festive colors. They were made of feathers, sequence, dye, and other natural fabrics. A powwow is a Native American gathering, or celebration that began with the Plains tribe, and continued to other Native American tribes through the years (Schultz, 2001). A powwow is also the oldest known public ritual of the Native Americans...
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