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Submitted photo / A dancer takes to the floor during last year’s festival in Quinn Coliseum. A traditional Friendship Feast, arts and crafts vendors, wellness event and raffle are all part of the annual spring gathering at EOU May 6-7.
LA GRANDE, Ore. April 11, 2016 – The annual Indian Arts Festival and Spring Powwow at Eastern Oregon University marks its 46th year in May. Grand Entries are at 7 p.m. Friday, May 6 and 1 and 7 p.m. Saturday, May 7 in Quinn Coliseum.
A traditional Friendship Feast, arts and crafts vendors, wellness event and donation raffle are also part of the gathering. All activities are family-friendly, free and open to the public.
“Last year’s event was a major success, doubling the amount of dancers from the previous year,” said Shoshoni Walker, coordinator of EOU’s Rural and Native American Program. “We hope to continue the growth and bring in more drums, dancers, venders and community members. This is a great opportunity to participate in and learn about the culture and traditions native to this region.”
Coinciding with the powwow this year is the 16th Annual Rita Monahan Wellness Event from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday at Dorion Park at the corner of 6th St. and H Ave. on campus. It includes a 5K walk/run, health-related booths, live music, raffle items, health screenings and fitness demonstrations.
EOU’s Wellness Program and the OHSU School of Nursing in La Grande are partnering on the event, which raises scholarship funds to assist graduating nursing students with paying for their RN licensure examination.
Saturday evening, the Friendship Feast will precede the Grand Entry with food served in the auxiliary gym in Quinn beginning at 5 p.m.
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Arts and crafts vendors will be set up both Friday and Saturday with a variety of wares including American Indian style flutes, and beaded and wire-wrapped jewelry. Vendors can register at www.eou.edu/powwow.
In addition to the regular lineup of social and competitive dancing will be Men’s Slick Style, Women’s Short Fringe and Traditional, along with a hand drum contest offering opportunities for participants to earn extra cash prizes. There is no dancer fee.
Serving as Host Drum this year is Enhallimen, from Lapwai, Idaho. Thomas Morning Owl is the master of ceremonies, representing the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation.
The Speel-Ya Native American Student Council, Associated Students of EOU and many in-kind donations support this event.
For more information visit www.eou.edu/powwow, call 541-962-3588 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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