Native American Indian Pow Wow

This article will explain who leads the Native American Indian Pow Wows in this country and what their duties are.

Pow Wows can be found in almost every state in this country. The Pow Wow is a gathering of American Indian Nations for the purpose of brotherhood and goodwill. At Pow Wow you will witness traditional culture of these nations along with beautiful dances, traditional foods and spirit.

Every Pow Wow has a head staff. The head staff has many responsibilities. These people are chosen by a panel who determine the person best to represent all Indian nations as a whole. The appointments are based on many things including past participation, knowledge of traditions, and support of all nations of Indians. Usually these appointed leaders are chosen from many people who feel that they should be the chosen leaders. The names of the possible choices are passed on to the panel who decides who would be best suited for the chosen positions. Then the votes are cast for the positions that are available for the head staff of the Pow Wow.

The person who leads the Pow Wow is called Master of Ceremonies. The Master of Ceremonies opens the Pow wow and also closes the Pow Wow. The Master of Ceremonies also entertains the crowds with jokes as well as educates people visiting by explaining the dances and what they mean. You will always be able to distinguish the Master of ceremonies by the fact they are always stationed on the podium during Pow Wow.

The arena director has an awesome job. Arena director is responsible for all that goes on within the Pow Wow arena. This includes blessings, prayers, or appointment os persons who can conduct religious ceremony within the Pow Wow arena. the arena director is responsible for all traditions to be carried out properly as well as respect to be shown at all times.

The Host Northern Drum are people who drum for the Northern area nations. The Northern drum is not only one drummer, but several. When speaking of the "drum" you must also include singers in that statement. The drum is one of the most sacred positions to hold in Pow Wow. There is also a Head Southern drum. Head Southern drum holds the same responsibilities, although they represent the nations to the south. Women are never allowed to drum. Women in the group will sing and lend support only.

Head Man and Woman dancer is an honor gained by overall traditional values and Pow Wow status. These head dancers are chosen to represent all adult dancers at Pow Wow. They are chosen for the position by their knowledge of traditions, their previous awards on Pow Wow circuit and also by their example of good traditional living and embracing their culture. These adults will lead in the other dancers when Grand Entry of dancers occurs at Pow Wow. Head Boy and Girl dancers have much the same responsibility as Head Man and Woman dancer. These children represent all children at Pow Wow. They represent these children in a Positive manner. These child dancers are very culturally aware and most have been dancing since they were infants. These children are good role models for other Indian children as well as all children in general.

Each person has the responsibility to educate and instruct on cultural tradition. Each of these people are familiar with the religious aspect of Pow Wow as well as the cultural and traditional. These people can also lead song in their native language.

Pow Wow officials will also honor elders as well as have visiting "royalty" Royality can be someone who has set an exceptional, positive example for all indians, or it can be simply and elder with the wisdom of the ancestors to share. Either way you look at it, the royality deserve their title.

Some Pow Wows royality are princesses. The princesses are those girls ages ten through sixteen usually who run for the title of Pow Wow princess. To be nominated for princess you again must know traditional values and your culture but you must bid to be voted on. Soem ways a princess recieves her title are votes by the Indian community, or the girls will sell tickets to Pow Wow. Sometimes the title comes from high ticket sales, other times it is given for setting supurb and positive examples within the community such as volunteer work, knowing native language and tradition, and living a clean life.

Anyway you look at it being appointed for a Pow Wow leaders position is a great honor. You are now looked upon as a positive helpful person in the community. Your responsibility does not end at the close of Pow Wow. Indian leadership values your input. Your traditional values and cultural knowledge is taught to other tribal members in effort to preserve for future generations their American Indian ways. You can always continue on and keep on the pow wow circuit but many leaderes opt to continue on within their own community.

Childrens programs for cultural education have been established by past pow wow leaders. Volunteer programs for the elderly have been installed even in the smallest Indian communities under the supervision of past pow wow leaders. Children leaders teach and educate not only other Indian children, but they teach non Indian the values of American Indians in the world and the positive effects Indians have had on all aspects of the universe. Several Pow Wow Head Girl dancers have set up programs for children concerning environmental protection which are being used in public schools to educate children and boost their awareness. These Same American Indian children have began mentoring programs in Inner City Schools in large cities.

The Pow Wow experience is always a positive one. The spirit of the event goes home with you and remains a vital part of your being. The leaders stand for all that is positive in Pow Wow and they need to be honored for their positions.

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