Biggest Chumash cultural event of the year draws crowd to Live Oak Campground

Crowds of spectators and performers filled Live Oak Campground near Lake Cachuma this weekend with Native American dancing, singing and drumming at the 17th annual Chumash Intertribal Pow-Wow.

The pow-wow, the largest cultural event of the year held by the Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians, began Saturday with a gourd dance. The grand entry of dancers was the highlight on Sunday.

Members of tribal nations from across the country participated in dancing and drumming competitions at the gathering that is planned, organized and operated by a committee of Chumash tribal volunteers. Dancing categories include traditional, straight, fancy and grass dancing.

This year’s theme is “Kiyushk' Al — We Are Strong.”

Although pow-wows are not traditionally a part of the Chumash culture, other Native American tribes have gathered for decades to dance, sing, socialize and heal.

The local tribe’s first pow-wow was held in the early 1970s on its reservation with a few dancers and spectators. Some of the first pow-wows were held as fundraisers for the first water system to provide running water for the tribal members living on the reservation.

Through the years, the pow-wow has grown into a showcase for tribes in their traditional regalia. Vendors range from food booths to artists selling jewelry, clothing and arts and crafts. The event typically attracts about 300 dancers and 3,000 spectators.

GALLERY: Chumash Pow Wow at Live Oak Camp- PHOTOS CREDITS Frank Cowan


Responses to "Pow-wow honors many tribes (Photos)"

  1. Anonymous says:

    Where is it held?

  2. Anonymous says:

    i to all the indian nations of the Americas. i am a half indian from jam,aica west indies. respect to you all

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