ATMORE — After a two-year hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Poarch Band of Creek Indians will once again celebrate one of its unique enduring Thanksgiving traditions with the annual its …
ATMORE — After a two-year hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Poarch Band of Creek Indians will once again celebrate one of its unique enduring Thanksgiving traditions with the annual its Pow Wow.
This year marks the 50th anniversary of the annual Pow Wow which got its start in 1971 as a homecoming celebration for Tribal members. Defined by its tradition of sharing, the tribe extended invitations to friends and neighbors and the event grew rapidly. Today, a half-century later, the Poarch Pow Wow has become a tradition for thousands of Alabama families, as well as visitors from across America.
"This year's Pow Wow is especially meaningful to us," said Chris "Ding Ding" Blackburn, Planning and Events Coordinator for the tribe. "We are so happy to be resuming the Pow Wow after having to cancel it the last two years due to COVID-19 and the fact this year also marks our 50th celebration makes that return to tradition even more special."
The two-day event packs in plenty of family-friendly activities for all ages. One of the events more popular with visitors are the dance competitions where American Indians from over 20 Tribal Nations across the United States perform indigenous dances in authentic regalia. Both entertaining and educational, the dance competitions feature four age categories and several different styles of dance.
Another highlight is the annual crowning of the Poarch Creek Indian Princesses. Once crowned, princesses will serve as ambassadors of the tribe throughout the year at public events as well as tribal gatherings across the U.S.
"Pow Wow is a time of celebration that we all look forward to throughout the year," said Stephanie Bryan, Tribal Chair of the Poarch Band of Creek Indians. "We are grateful for those who take this special opportunity to experience part of our 50-year Native American tradition. It is a true joy to share this cherished time with so many people from places both near and far."
In addition to the main performances, visitors can find unique crafts and goods at the many vendor booths including handmade items by tribal artisans. Guest can also enjoy an array of food ranging from traditional home-cooked barbecue and buffalo burgers to fire-roasted corn.
The Annual Thanksgiving Day Pow Wow at the Poarch Creek Indian Reservation takes place Thanksgiving Day, Thursday, Nov. 24 and Friday, Nov. 25. The events begin at 10 a.m. each day. Admission is $5 per person ages 7 and older. Children ages 6 and under are free. For more information, visit pci-nsn.gov.