By Melissa Voss, News Editor
On Saturday, April 13, the University of Minnesota Morris hosted the 35th Annual Circle of Nations Indigenous Association (CNIA) Powwow at the Cougar Sports Center. According to the Crazy Crow Trading Post website, CNIA Powwow has a rich history of promoting the campus and Morris community to embrace the Indigenous heritages that spread across Minnesota, North Dakota, and South Dakota and serves as an opportunity for students to develop leadership skills, promote cultural awareness, and network with potential American Indian students.
The doors for the powwow opened at 9 a.m. with a Grand Entry of all the dancers inside the Cougar Sports Center. Several vendors were also located on the main floor, many of which sold clothing, jewelry, blankets, and CDs. A food stand was also available, selling Indian tacos and frybread.
Two other Grand Entries took place at noon and at 7 p.m. during the powwow. From 9 a.m. to noon, dance competitions took place on the main floor of the Cougar Sports Center. Competitions were split up into six divisions: tiny tots, junior, teen, adult men, adult women, and “golden age”, each having prizes for the top three of each division. At 3 p.m., an honor song was performed for the late Mike Miller, who, according to Jenna Ray from the Office of Communications and Marketing, was a longtime leader in the UMN Morris Multi-Ethnic Student Program, an advisor to CNIA, and a resource for UMN Morris students from 1987 to 2008. Special events also took place on the main floor including Hand Drum (One Man), Chicken Dance, Potato Dance, Street Clothes Dance, the Crawford Family Jingle Dress Special, Outgoing Princess, Two Step, and Outgoing Brave: Jr. Boys Fancy Dance.
Photo above courtesy of UMM Flickr