Annual event at Spirit Lake showcases tradition and skillHundreds of traditional dancers, singers and drummers from throughout Indian Country will gather on the Spirit Lake Sioux Reservation this weekend to compete for more than $40,000 in prize money during the 46th annual Fort Totten Days Powwow.
By: Chuck Haga, Grand Forks Herald
Hundreds of traditional dancers, singers and drummers from throughout Indian Country will gather on the Spirit Lake Sioux Reservation this weekend to compete for more than $40,000 in prize money during the 46th annual Fort Totten Days Powwow.
Activities begin Thursday with Indian games and riding competitions and the selection of the Fort Totten Days princess.
The powwow grand entry will be at 7 p.m. Friday at the Andrew Shaw Arena, with grand entries also scheduled at 1 p.m. and 7 p.m. Saturday and 1 p.m. Sunday. More than 500 dancers and 25 drum and singing groups competed last year in various dancing and singing categories.
A youth rodeo on Friday afternoon at the Fort Totten Rodeo Grounds south of Four Winds School will feature riding, roping and other events for competitors up to 18 years old.
A sanctioned North Dakota Roughrider Rodeo starts at 2 p.m. Saturday and 4 p.m. Sunday, with roping, bareback and bull riding, and other events. Admission to the rodeo is $8, free to children 10 years and under. Other events are free and open to the public, said Marty Greywater, 32, one of the organizers.
Horseshoe and basketball tournaments also are planned.
“Ever since I was a kid growing up, it’s been an honor to participate in this,” Greywater said. “It’s always an important celebration for the people of Spirit Lake.”
Denver Little Wind, 31, is organizing the youth rodeo, which will include stick-horse races for the youngest competitors. Winners in the various categories will receive traditional rodeo buckles.
“It’s been a tradition for the Spirit Lake Tribe since my mom was a kid,” Little Wind said. “I helped out even as a little guy.”
Call Haga at (701) 780-1102; (800) 477-6572, ext. 1102; or send email to firstname.lastname@example.org.