featured graphic for the 50th Annual Powwow at CSU Long Beach

50th annual Powwow returns to Cal State Long Beach

After a three-year hiatus, the CSULB Pow Wow – the longest running university-based powwow west of the Mississippi River – is back.

The two-day gathering, March 11-12, will be the 50th anniversary of the largest gathering of American Indians in Los Angeles and Orange counties. The event will feature American Indian dancing, arts, crafts and food beginning at 11 a.m. each day until 10 p.m. on Saturday and 7 p.m. on Sunday at the Upper Campus Quad.

“The purpose is to show other Native American students that there is a Native American community on campus,” said Anna Nazarian-Peters, interim director of student life and development and coordinator of American Indian Student Services.

The powwow – also known as the CSU Puvungna Pow Wow, after the Indian village that once inhabited CSULB land – is co-sponsored by the American Indian Studies Program, American Indian Student Services, American Indian Student Council, Student Affairs, Student Life and Development, and Associated Students, Inc.

A significant part of the event is the traditional dancing (including Gourd dancing), singing and drumming. Participants dress in outfits and regalia that reflect their tribes, and other cultures as well. Cash prizes are given for dancing and singing in various categories.

American Indian arts, crafts and food are also displayed and sold at the event. Some favorite Native foods include fry bread, Navajo or Indian tacos, mutton, beef stew and Indian burgers.

Arts include traditional and contemporary American Indian creations. All vendors must comply with the Indian Arts and Crafts Act of 1990, which enforces authenticity and outlaws the selling of fakes.

This article was released by Cal State Long Beach.