Swan River Powwow and Culture Camp

Pearl Lorentzen
Lakeside Leader

Swan River First Nation has built a new powwow arbour at Creeland Park. On July 9, it held its first powwow in the new arbour.

The powwow kicked off the annual culture camp. The three-day event included moose calling, traditional games and bannock and tea making.

Marcy Sheldon, Swan River receptionist, and councilman Bud Giroux figure the camp has been going for over 40 years.

Swan River has a new culture program running throughout the year. The program included other traditional skills like moose hide tanning and ice fishing.

As part of this program, kids at the Swan River School made powwow outfits. Denny Bellerose, from Driftpile, taught traditional dances.

In the month leading up to the powwow, around 20 women made ribbon skirts. Many of them danced for the first time at the powwow. April Giroux and Sophia Cyre taught the class.

Drifting Swan, from Driftpile and Swan River, and other drum circles from Mountain Cree Camp, Edmonton and Onion Lake drummed and sang for the powwow.

L to r: Dressed in regalia, Mildred Supernault, Erin Thunder, and Nancy Chalifoux take a break from dancing to chat during the Swan River Powwow on July 9.
Sophia Cyre, from Swan River, dances an inter-tribal dance. She was one of the teachers of the ribbon skirt workshop.
Kimberly Davis shows off her new ribbon skirt. She was one of the youngest dancers in the new ribbon skirt category.
Young powwow dancers lined up as part of the grand entry for the Swan River Powwow. From left to right are Makayla Sloat, Felix Valiquette, Zeus Twin, Germaine Giroux, and Braden Giroux. These were a few of the Swan River School students who learned powwow dancing this year.
Nancy Chalifoux, from Driftpile, shakes hands with Swan River Chief Gerald Giroux. As part of the grand entry, dignitaries were introduced to the crowd and greeted each other. Chalifoux and Chief Giroux were some of the people honoured in the grand entry at the Swan River Powwow. Next to the chief are councilmen Mark Davis-Giroux and Bud Giroux, in the blue ribbon shirt.

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