By: Lynnetta Blalock | Category: In Our Communities | Issue: August 2014
Dancer Ziggy Williams. Photo by Tara Madden.
Experience the beauty and richness of Native American culture when the Intertribal Indian Club of Tulsa (IICOT) hosts the 37th annual Pow Wow of Champions August 8-10, 2014. The dance is located at the Oral Roberts University Mabee Center, 7777 S. Lewis in Tulsa. The Mabee Center will come alive in a colorful expression of dance, drum music and song as members of tribal nations throughout the country gather together to honor, strengthen and share traditions with each other and the general public. The dance spectator area will be held in air conditioned comfort. Over 300 dancers, dressed in full Native American dance clothes, will participate throughout the weekend in ceremonies and dances, including Grand Entries, intertribal dances and dance competitions.
The Grand Entries mark the beginning of pow wow sessions, led by the Eagle Staff and the United States flag carried by a Native American Color Guard. The procession of dignitaries and dancers is a brilliant and constantly moving sea of color circling the arena to the rhythmic beat of drum and song. It is a photographers’ paradise; watching the Grand Entry is exciting and awe-inspiring. It is impossible not to move with the rhythm of the drum and be caught up in the energy.
In the competitive sessions, dancers use the whole arena to exhibit their skills with grace and finesse while attempting to catch the judges’ eyes with their personal style, footwork falling on the beat of the music, and striking dance clothes.
The Pow Wow of Champions will also feature an Arts and Crafts Mart with an excellent selection of traditional and contemporary jewelry, artwork, beadwork, paintings, and quality handcrafted items, rarely seen in one location.
Traditional foods will be a prominent part of this annual pow wow. Fry bread, meat pies, and Indian tacos will be available, as well as many other tempting and tasty items.
Step back into time – there is plenty of Free Parking. A souvenir program book that includes information on the different dance styles will be available for purchase.
The doors will open at 5 p.m. on Friday, August 8 with dancing beginning at 6 p.m. Saturday, August 9 and Sunday, August 10, the doors will open at 11 a.m. with dancing beginning at noon. The Pow Wow of Champions is a family event, and is an alcohol and drug free event. Tickets are available at the door the days of the event. IICOT is also inviting all Tulsa Public Schools students to attend the pow wow for free, with one paid adult admission per free student. TPS students must bring either last year’s report card or their student ID to be admitted free.