Fall Equinox Pow-Wow at Ferris to Celebrate Native American Culture

Native AmericanThe Fall Equinox Traditional Pow-wow on Saturday, Sept. 22 at Ferris State University will celebrate Native American culture through food, dance and art.

The free event is being hosted by the university’s Circle of Tribal Nations and Office of Multicultural Student Services through funds awarded by the Diversity and Inclusion Office Faculty/Staff Mini Grant.

“I hope people gain a greater appreciation for Native American culture, ceremonies and traditions by learning about pow-wow-style dances and their connections to the environment,” said Michael VanHorn of the Circle of Tribal Nations, a Registered Student Organization on campus.

The pow-wow opens at 1 p.m. with a Grand Entry of Native American dancers in full regalia into the Campus Quad, located between FLITE and the Rankin Student Center. A second grand entry is planned at 6 p.m., which will conclude the event along with a traditional giveaway.

The event, which is open to the public, will include vendors offering crafts and authentic food and a hand drum contest from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m.

Participants will include head veteran Bill Martell, host drums Dusty Bear and Urban Nation, head dancers Marcus Winchester and Michelle Reyna, and arena director Phillip Memberto. It will be emceed by Derek Bailey.

Limited seating is available, so chairs are encouraged.

The Circle of Tribal Nations RSO was reactivated this summer by Scott Herron, the university’s Biology Education Program coordinator who serves as advisor, and VanHorn. The RSO was established in the early 1990s, but interest declined in recent years.

CTN’s logo is a symbol of the origin of Native people, VanHorn said.

“Turtles are a symbol of the earth, originating from the Native American legend of ‘Turtle Island’ which is their name for the North American continent due to its shape (Florida is one hind leg, Baja California is another, Mexico is the tail),” VanHorn explained. “Michigan lying at the heart of the turtle, allowed Circle of Tribal Nations and friends to envision/symbolize the importance of ‘Turtle Island’ to all aboriginal people throughout North America, portraying the significance globally.”

Membership is open to enrolled students, faculty and staff dedicated to expanding public awareness and preservation of tribal cultures. Meetings are held at 11 a.m. Tuesdays in the Smith Greenhouse on the second floor of the Science Building. Contact Herron at (231) 591-2087 or herrons@ferris.edu or VanHorn at (231) 660-3117 or vanhorn2@ferris.edu.

Visit Circle of Tribal Nations on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Circle-of-Tribal-Nations/201247643274939.

For more information on the Fall Equinox Pow-Wow, visit http://www.ferris.edu/HTMLS/studentlife/Minority/homepage.htm.

Last updated: 09-20-2012