On April 19, 20 and 21, the BC First Nation’s Student Association attended the University of Washington Spring Powwow at the Alaska Airlines Arena at the Hec Ed Pavilion. The powwow had roughly 50 vendors present who sold traditional native arts and crafts like beadwork, handmade drums, smoked meats and salmons. Every year at the UW Spring Powwow, there are about 8,000 people in attendance including the performers.
Maria Givens, UW student and coordinator of the UW Powwow Spring Event, said, “The purpose of putting on this event is to promote higher education in Indian country. The UW Powwow is the biggest recruiting tool to get native students interested in higher education.”
As a takeaway from the event, Givens states that, “Every year we are reminded of the importance this event has on the community.”
The Spring Powwow has not only been taking place for 42 consecutive years, but it is also the largest Powwow event in Seattle and at UW. For BC and UW, both participate with students groups, administration and the Native community, in order to make the event the success that it is every year.
For the future, for both BC and UW, Givens said, “Our goal is always to provide a community for Native Students and to promote higher education in the American Indian/Alaskan Native community. We also put on Native events for our community here in Seattle. In the future, we hope to continue putting on such a large Powwow and involving our community. We hope to incorporate the Coast Salish culture in more of our events and pay proper tribute to the people whose land we study on.”
The next major event that is being held for the First Nation’s Student Association is being held this weekend on Saturday at the University of Washington. The event will be a Coast Salish Jam and Shahal Tournament. Shahal, which is also known as a stick game or hand game, is a traditional game of luck and chance. The Coastal Jam is for anybody who wants to come and hang out, but with an importance of singing and dancing. Additionally, the club is looking to host a barbeque in the near future for clubs to bond.
For those who are interested in participating in any events similar to these or who wish to express more Native American culture, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.