Sokaogon Chippewa Community News
Pow Wows Promote Culture and Healthy Living
The Healthy Living Pow Wow was held last week at the Crandon and Wabeno high schools. Kimberlee Soldier was one the organizers, and shared her thoughts on these very special events.
“I became involved with this event shortly after I became a Tribal AmeriCorps member in 2016. The partners with the Community Coalition of Forest County and the Mole Lake Coalition were looking for ways to promote healthy living with tradition and heritage, as we believe culture is prevention. One of those ways is our community pow wows. So, why not throw in some education on our Native American heritage while we’re at it? So that’s what we did.”
The Pow Wows welcomed students of all ages, and a great deal of planning was done in advance of the events.
“In 2016, Rachel Vodar helped me get in contact with Woodland Sky Native American Dance Company and we invited them to join us for two years in a row. This year we wanted to showcase more of our heritage as Native Americans. As a coalition, we asked Sonny Smart if he would join us by speaking to our youth and sharing his knowledge. Yvette McGeshick, a coalition member, contacted Sonny, and Artie VanZile, also a coalition member, contacted Fire Nation to see if they would honor us by drumming and singing. Artie also contacted some adults and youth within our Sokaogon community and the Forest County Potawatomi Community to see if they would join in dancing for the students at the schools. I talked with Dean VanZile to see if he and other SCC Veterans would also join us.
“It really turned out to be a great two days. We all worked together to pull it off, I didn’t do this all alone,” Kimberlee continued.
Chi Miigwech to everyone who organized and participated in the Healthy Living Pow Wows.