Powwow princess to represent Washoes
Appeal Staff Writer
The first official duty of the Washoe Tribe’s new La Ka Le’l Be Princess comes today when she participates in the Nevada Day Parade.
Four girls from the Washoe Tribe of California and Nevada competed for the honor Friday by answering questions and performing a traditional American Indian dance before several judges and an audience.
This year’s princess is Kaylene Scott, 13, of Hungry Valley. She is a member of the Reno-Sparks Indian Community and attends Yvonne Shaw Middle School. Her long, red American Indian style dress was as noisy as it was bright and festive. Every time she moved, several rows of cones jingled.
“I want to be a role model for younger girls,” Scott told the judges before doing a Jingle Dance, which is said to promote healing, though many legends about its origins exist.
As princess, she will represent the tribe at events at home and elsewhere.
Miss Teen Washoe Dawneva Lundy-Bryan, who will appear in the parade today with Scott, said that representing the tribe this way is an honor.
It’s an opportunity to show “how much their tribe means to them,” said Lundy-Bryan, 16. “It’s a privilege to tell people what you think and what’s in your heart.”
Scott said after the competition that she’ll enjoy meeting new people and showing them what it’s like to be an American Indian and member of the Washoe Tribe.
The crown she’ll wear took 16 hours to create and was beaded by hand. The state of Nevada, its squared-off northern end, is depicted and Carson City is marked. Two large red roses are expressions of “coming into womanhood” and innocence, said Katherine Walker, who created the crown and a pair of matching earrings.
Girls in the tribe ages 12-16 are allowed to try out as princess. The other girls who participated are Danielle Christensen, 13, of Gardnerville; Kalynn Payne, 12, of the Woodfords; and Delphine Painter, 13, of Carson City.
Painter’s mother, Debbie, is the lead organizer of the Powwow and Walker is her aunt. Delphine was the first runner up for princess.
The La Ka Le’l Be Powwow continues this weekend. It will be at the Carson Colony Community Center, 2900 S. Curry St., 2-11 p.m. today and noon- 5 p.m. Sunday.
“We do this to keep our traditions,” said Melba Rakow, one of the judges. “It’s to remember where your roots are.”
Visitors are welcome to attend the Powwow, though tribal members ask that photographs not be taken without the consent of the people who would be in them.
La Ka Le’l Be participants and vendors are coming to Carson City from California, Arizona, New Mexico, Oregon, Washington and Canada.
Though no one will compete, there still will be plenty of dancing, singing, drumming and Indian tacos to enjoy, along with an array of arts and crafts vendors.
Organizers are hoping to hold a more competitive event next year, and to promote it so more visitors know about it and drop in, Debbie Painter said.
La Ka Le’l Be means “the gathering.”
If you go
What: La Ka Le’l Be Powwow
When: 2 p.m. to 11 p.m. today and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday
Where: Carson Colony Community Center, 2900 S. Curry St.
• Contact reporter Terri Harber at tharber @nevadaappeal.com or 882-2111, ext. 215.