Stewart Father’s Day Pow-wow doing great in first year back
After a four-year hiatus, the Stewart Father’s Day Pow-wow is back and as big as ever, said organizer Sherrada James.
“I’m totally excited because we haven’t been holding the pow-wow for a few years and we didn’t know what the turnout would be,” said James, executive director of the Nevada Indian Commission. “We didn’t expect all these vendors and look, we have over 100 dancers.”
Based on the theme “A Time of Renewal,” the gathering was both a time for people to rekindle old friendships and to build interest in a new Stewart Indian Museum and Cultural Center, she said. The old museum closed in 2001, but the commission is working to open a new one on the Stewart campus.
Shoshone, Washoe, Cree and Paiute dancers came from all over the West for the three-day gathering. The circle of shade tents was organized on the green grass next to building three, which used to house the museum.
Dancers competed in several different categories, including men’s and women’s fancy, traditional and women’s jingle dress.
Taylor Miller of Elko was the only competitor in the young boys’ fancy category. He danced in elaborate purple regalia made by his mother, JoAnn. He’ll be attending Elko Junior High next year as a seventh grader.
Six members of the Julianto family — known as the Sweet Sage Group — played a big drum and sang while Miller danced.
“We’ve been singing for like nine years now,” said Derald Julianto from Owyhee.
Teens from Rite of Passage in Yerington were volunteering at the pow-wow, helping people set up their shade tents, according to coach Mike Styers.
Vendor Mike Williams of Carson brought his tule duck decoys, arrow quivers and baskets for sale.
“It’s just a blessing to be able to be here because it hasn’t happened in about five years,” he said. “It’s a good time for the tribal people to get together.”
Cheryl Murphy had her mobile kitchen truck on site making Indian Tacos.
“They’re the best,” said her niece and employee, Jillian Fillmore of Dayton.
Next door the Native American Youth Club was selling fry bread.
Mike Leighton of Ogden, Utah was in line.
“We want to benefit the youth,” he said. “It’s a good cause.”
He was in town to visit with his future father-in-law, Al Schroeder.