the drums and the announcer's voice, one sound was a near constant
at the Native American Day powwow Monday - the bells of Emmett Eastman.
71, took few breaks as dancing proceeded throughout the afternoon
at the Multi-Cultural Center in downtown Sioux Falls.
rather die on my feet than live on my knees," said the Wahpeton,
N.D., man, explaining why he keeps on dancing. "The drums are
even teenagers and children took a breather during the dances, Eastman
kept circling the floor in a traditional outfit that featured bells
on his ankles. He came to Sioux Falls on Monday after attending
other powwows over the weekend.
traditional dancer, Eastman didn't start dancing at powwows until
20 years ago. He used to go to powwows and watch, but dancing didn't
appeal to him.
all changed. "I run marathons, and I know about a runner's
high. I get a dancing high, and it's much better," he said.
Williams, 11, understands that feeling. A student at St. Joseph's
Indian School in Chamberlain, she has been dancing since age 2.
mom took me to a powwow, and when I saw the dancers, my mom said,
"Do you want to dance with them?'" she said. She did,
and she's been dancing ever since.
powwow has been at the Multi-Cultural Center every Native American
Day since 1998.
Aware, director of the center, said it was gratifying to see the
standing-room-only crowd gather for a meal followed by dancing.
center set up 500 chairs, but people also lined the walls of the
gymnasium at the center.
public can learn and share the music, the dancing and the culture,"
the event, announcer Wayne Evans of Vermillion told the crowd that
the powwow wasn't only for Native Americans, at one point announcing
a dance for children.
want all children out there. This includes our nonfeathered friends,"
he said. Later he told them, "Dance your style. If you dance
the polka, that's OK."
Evans, a member of the committee that initiated reconciliation efforts
under Gov. George Mickelson, said she's pleased to see those efforts
being discussed again by Gov. Mike Rounds.
is a celebration of our uniqueness," she said, referring to
the powwow. "It brings together the community so we can get
together and learn about our differences."