29 April 2012

Bird-motif Regalia Featured at Intertribal Powwow

Feathers and other bird-motif items were featured by grandly clad dancers at the Inter-Tribal Student Council Powwow. The regalia represents "the dancers own unique expressions of spirit and experiences, often comprised of priceless heirlooms and other articles handmade by family and friends," according to a handout on powwow etiquette.

Prominent example of the importance of birds to the tribe are shown in the following examples.


Rich, notice the thunderbird motif on his vest

Tyron, with a magnificent example of how eagle feathers can be used to create personal regalia

Darrell Grant, Omaha (pronounced "Maha")

His regalia included a waterbird staff ornament and an eagle-feather fan. Eagle feathers are held in the "highest regard" by members of the tribe, he said. Also prominent are screech-owl feathers (as featured in his garb), as well as Wild Turkey feathers.


Myron, an Omaha Winnebago

Ross, representing the next generation of dancers

Elbert, an Omaha; notice the raptor foot item

All of the most dramatic examples of bird-related adornment were outfits worn by the men. The women did often have a single feather adorning their hair.

Other examples of a bird-related motif are shown in an exquisite bead-work leggings and vest. There were numerous other examples of the fine regalia of tribal traditions being celebrated at the powwow, or wachipi in the native language.

The Omaha tribe has had a long tradition associated with birds, and their use in important ceremonies.

Darrell Grant working with the drum team during a dance.

The event was held April 28th, at the Sapp Fieldhouse on the University of Nebraska at Omaha campus.

Two young Queens of the powwow.

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