How do I become a pow wow fancy shawl dancer ? I am 18 and I know how to dance inter tribal dances and my mom was a jingle dress dancer when she was younger and my grandmother was a fancy shawl dancer, how do I register?

Go you!

The first thing I would encourage you to do is to get a mentor. This person can help guide you through all the things you’ll need to get started. They can coach you on regalia making, dancing with the traditions of style, meaning, and etiquette. Though you might ask family first about regalia, just in case there is someone who may have a dress they are not using and will let you borrow. You can also watch video’s about the different styles of dancing and practice at home.

Registration is usually a one-page sheet you can download from the pow-wow’s website (depending on how big it is) or you can pick up a registration page at your tribal office. Sometime pow-wow’s will ask for a small registration fee. You’ll register by age and dance style. You’re usually required to dance in the Grand Entry. If you’re already comfortable dancing the intertribals already, go for it and register for your dance category.

If it’s been awhile since you’ve danced, you might need to get back into dancing shape. Remember those 3 minute/ 30 second songs can seem like a lifetime! Check out Shoshone-Bannock’s work out video’s called Powwow Sweat.

Best of luck!

Auntie Manda

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Topics: Culture and Language|Identity