EvCC powwow keeps tribal traditions alive

  • By Muatasim Qazi Herald Writer
  • Tuesday, May 10, 2011 12:01am
  • Local News

EVERETT — A small village of American Indians once thrived here near the mouth of the Snohomish River, next to Port Gardner.

The village, known as Hibulb, doesn’t exist anymore, but descendents of its residents live on various reservations, including the Tulalip Tribes.

Once a year, v

arious tribes gather in Everett to honor their ancestors, keeping the traditions alive and showing respect for the culture and heritage of past, present and future generations of American Indians.

For more than 20 years, 1st Nations, a student club at Everett Community College, has been celebrating with the Hibulb Powwow.

This is the third year the club is co-hosting the event with Marysville-Pilchuck High School and Tulalip Heritage High School.

It will be held at EvCC’s Student Fitness Center on Saturday. The event starts at 1 p.m. with a grand entry. It is open to the public and includes a free dinner.

Earl Martin, a counselor for the TRiO program at EvCC, was among the first people who arranged a powwow on campus. In the early 1990s, Martin, who at the time was the adviser of the United Native American Council club at the college, decided to host the first powwow.

“We named our powwow after that traditional village. [It] doesn’t exist anymore naturally, but it used to be … close to the college,” Martin said.

“Due to EvCC not having a gym, the last two powwows were held at Totem Middle School in Marysville,” said Paula Three Stars, current adviser to 1st Nations.

Powwows are intertribal social gatherings to celebrate American-Indian culture through dance, music, giveaways, namings and other ceremonies.

There are three dance categories for men and women, each wearing their own ceremonial dress style. Categories for men and boys include traditional, fancy war dance and grass dance; women and girls have traditional, fancy shawl dance and jingle dance. “The dancers will embellish their regalia creating a style that has meaning to them personally,” Three Stars said.

Dancers’ regalia are not costumes: they have personal, historical and religious significance and should not be touched.

“1st Nations club students are gifting this event to the Native Americans as well as the public to participate, visit friends they haven’t seen in a while, break bread, dance and witness any ceremony that may occur.”

Herald intern Muatasim Qazi originally wrote this for the EvCC newspaper “The Clipper.”

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