Monday, August 1, 2016

Chilcotin Holidays

Natives celebration Pow Wow – Different age categories


We left the Chilcotin Holidays Ranch with the Van at 10:30 am on a very sunny and very warm day. Today´s schedule: Pow Wow – Natives celebration weekend in Permberton. I was really looking forward to having the chance to get in touch with the tradition of the Natives. So far, I have seen some pictures with Natives dancing around a fire with a colourful costume, but, a picture doesn't represent emotions, feelings or other vibrations while the action is in progress.

Before I went to this cultural celebration I had just a little idea what the Pow Wow was about. Now, after going to the Pow Wow, I have got a better overview about the celebration, especially about the importance of it to the Natives. After arriving in Pemberton we noticed that the Pow Wow didn't take place outside. It was organized in a well air conditioned sports hall. We took our seats and within one minute I was totally fascinated and impressed about the special spiritual significance. I hadn't expected such a spiritual atmosphere to be created in a sports hall, but it is possible! I was watching the celebration and noticed that it is not just about singing, dancing and dress ups. It is also a friendly and peacful dance competition within particular age categories.

The age categories started with the so called “Tiny Tots”. Every little boy or girl who is under the age of 5 belongs to this category. Even at that age, they have impressive costumes and they also can dance to the rhythm of the drums like the older ones. The real competition starts when the boys and girls become age 6. In this category, from 6 to 12, they are called “Jr. Boys and Girls”. While the “dance battle” is in progress, on the dance floor boys and girls are strictly seperated. The “Teens” are classified from 13 to 17. This is the last step before the age category “Adult” starts from 18 to 39. The “Teens” are very professional. They wear self made costumes and are constantly improving their dance skills before they are classified as “Adults”. The second last age category is called “Senior Men and Women”. This age is classified from the age of 40 to 59. The most impressive age category is the “Golden Ages”. This is the last category starting at the age of 60 on wards. Whether “Golden Age”, Men or Women, dancing is always happening on the dance floor for all people to get up from their chairs to pay tribute to them.

Chilcotin Holidays

About Chilcotin Holidays

We are a licensed guide outfitter and we conduct guided wilderness adventures throughout our 5,000 square km operating area. This guide area has been operational since 1880, making it the oldest in British Columbia. More about us HERE.

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