Peace River Traditional Pow Wow returns June 3-4

Emily Plihal
Local Journalism
Initiative Reporter

Peace River Traditional Pow Wow is set to return on June 3-4 at the Peace River Agricultural Grounds.

The aboriginal traditional event will be filled with music, dancing and celebration throughout the two-day event. Sponsored by Peace River Aboriginal Interagency Committee (PRAIC), the event may have to be moved indoors or postponed if raging wildfires continue.

“We will make a decision on May 29,” says PRAIC’s Wendy Goulet, adding that people can either call or follow Facebook to get an update on whether or not the itinerary has changed.

“Grand entry is at 1 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.”

The celebration of Indigenous and Metis Culture will be held at the agricultural grounds located at 83562 Fairgrounds Road in Northern Sunrise County.

Goulet says there are three special activities during the two-day event. The MMIWG2S Special Teen and Women Jingle Dress Special is sponsored by Newgen Projects, Overdose Awareness Men’s and Teen Special is sponsored by Ruel Concrete, and Men’s and Teen Chicken Dance Special is sponsored by MSS Trucking.

“We will have children’s activities, free stew and bannock at 5 p.m. on Saturday, Metis jigging and fiddling contest at 5 p.m., and a special performance by Filipino Dance Troupe,” she says.

A graduation cere- mony will be held at 3 p.m. on Sunday, and a hand drum special will be held both Saturday and Sunday at 5 p.m.

“It is a time for gathering, seeing old friends and making new ones,” Goulet says, adding it is also about ceremony, dance and singing.

“It is an awesome opportunity for non-Indigenous community to experience Indigenous culture,” she adds.

“We will have authentic food and artisans. During inter-tribals anyone can dance, the drum beat calls everyone in. The drum is like the heartbeat of Mother Earth.”

Goulet says the event is run solely by volunteers. She says everyone is invited to participate or volunteer.

“The best part of the event is all of it. From bannock burgers, bannock tacos, and watching the athleticism of the dancers, it’s all fantastic.”

The 2023 celebration will mark the 19th annual pow pow and 26th Aborigi al Gathu.

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