Pow-Wow to be main event of Awareness Week


     This week, American Indians Reaching for Opportunities is hosting a Native American Awareness Week all leading up to the annual Pow-Wow on Saturday. 

     “A lot of people have a distorted image of Native Americans, especially at UW-Stevens Point where seeing a Native American is not very common,” said John DeNasha, vice-president of AIRO and a junior social work major.

     Native American Awareness Week on campus was created in the hopes of informing the community of Native American culture. 

     “I want people to learn that there are so many variations of Native Americans, and that we all didn’t live in teepees and eat buffalo,” DeNasha said.

     Events that focus on Native American culture have been held all week.  Tuesday night Leslie Teller hosted a Menomonee Storytelling; on Wednesday night two elders came to talk about Traditional and Contemporary Ojibwe Life; and there is a Bittersweet Winds Display on Thursday in the Laird Room from 11 a.m.-2 p.m.

     “Natives are often overlooked-most of the time we are talked about as if we are extinct.  This is to show that we are still here, that our culture is still alive, and that we have awesome celebrations,” said Sandra Gokee a junior broadfield social science major and president of AIRO. She is also vice-president of the American Indian Science and Engineering Society. 

     All of the events lead up to the 38th Annual AIRO Traditional Pow-Wow on Saturday. The Pow-Wow will consist of a traditional Pow-Wow as well as intertribal songs where everyone that attends is welcome to get up and dance.

     “Students can expect a lot of drumming, singing, and dancing,” Gokee said.

     There will also be a variety of vendors, raffles, a silent auction, and a feast at the Pow-Wow. In years past, more than 600 people have attended the celebration.

     The Pow-Wow is on Saturday from 1-10 p.m. at the HEC Berg Gymnasium. The feast will be at 5 p.m. and the show will start at 7 p.m.



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