LADWP and Hilda Solis to Co-Sponsor UAII Pow Wow
We are excited to announce that in a few short weeks, we will be hosting one of the largest Los Angeles pow wows in the history of UAII!
Thanks to the support and sponsorship of the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power and Los Angeles County Board Supervisor Hilda Solis, the pow wow is set to be held Saturday, December 3rd at Grand Park in Downtown Los Angeles across from LA City Hall in Yaangna Village.
Attendance at the long-awaited pow wow is anticipated to attract hundreds of friends from near and far, musicians, dancers, local political leaders, vendors, and tourists.
Pow wows are the Native people’s way of meeting together to join in dancing, singing, visiting, eating traditional food, renewing old friendships, and making new ones. This proud tradition brings all tribes and cultures together to celebrate in unity.
The pow wow will showcase traditional Native cooking, jewelry-making, music, and especially dancing – from Los Angeles and beyond! Throughout the day, tribes from the surrounding areas will dance in full tribal regalia.
All are welcome, Native and non-Native alike.
If this will be your first time attending a pow wow, please see our list of common questions and answers below.
The pow wow will be held at Grand Park in Downtown LA across for LA City Hall, in Yaanga Village.
Parking will be FREE for all!
Commonly Asked Questions and Answers
What is a Pow Wow?
A pow wow is a gathering where Native dancing, singing, and celebration take place. It is a special time for people to gather and celebrate, meet old friends and create new friendships.
In early times, hunters would invite their friends and relatives to share their good fortune. As time went on, while the meal was being prepared, relatives would dance to honor their host. Eventually, the dancing became the main focus of the event. Participants began to use this time to display their weaving, quillwork, and other finery. Pow wows also had religious significance. They were an opportunity for families to hold naming and honoring ceremonies. Pow wows have changed over the years. However, they are still gatherings where Native people can share part of their tribal traditions and culture – but they should not be confused with other tribal customs and ceremonies that are not performed or shared in public gatherings.
What is a Regalia?
Regalia is the proper term to use when referring to a dancer’s outfit.
Can I take pictures?
It is permissible to take pictures during much of the pow wow. If you are not sure always ask, since taking pictures of some activities is not allowed. Please ask dancers if it is okay to take his/her picture beforehand.
Note: During certain ceremonial dances, honor dances, or prayers the announcer may request that no pictures be taken. Please abide by the announcer’s request.
What is an Honor Song?
Spectators should always stand and remove their caps or hats during an Honor Song. As the name suggests, Honor Songs are requested at the pow wow to honor someone.
What are the different dance styles?
- Men’s Traditional dance is a traditional dance held over from times when war parties would return to the village and dance out the story of the battle, or hunters would return and dance their story of tracking an enemy or prey.
- Women’s Traditional dance is a regal dance.
- Women’s Fancy Shawl dance consists of a decorative knee-length cloth dress, beaded moccasins with matching leggings, a fancy shawl, and various pieces of jewelry. The dance itself is similar to the men’s fancy dance, and the style is moving toward more movement and especially spinning. Footwork is the chief element of the dance.
- Women’s Jingle dance dress consists traditionally of 365 metal cones or jingles and symbolizes each day of the year. Contemporary dresses will have various amounts of jingles.
What is the Grand Park Yaanga Village named after?
Yaanga was a large Tongva village originally located near what is now downtown Los Angeles, just west of the Los Angeles River and beneath U.S. Route 101. People from the village were recorded as Yabit in missionary records although were known as Yaangavit, Yavitam, or Yavitem among Native people.
Will there be alcohol at this event?
No, this will be an alcohol-free event.