Special Collections Supports the 29th NC State University Pow-Wow

Men's drum circle at Pow-Wow

Men's drum circle at Pow-Wow

This week, the 29th Annual NC State University Pow-Wow will be held at Carmichael Gym on Saturday 6 April.  The first Pow-Wow at NC State was held in 1990, and is a community event which combines dance, drumming, feasting, and craft as a celebration of resilience, Sovereignty, and family traditions.  Pow-Wow is sponsored by the Native American Student Association and provides an inclusive shared space for performers and audiences from across the state, including members of the public, to gather and celebrate together.  Read more about the history of Pow-Wow via Multicultural Student Affairs.

Guests may enter the Pow-Wow via Courts 9-11 from 11am, with the Grand Entry beginning at noon, and the event concluding at 6.30pm.  Admission is free for current NC State students, Elders, and children; and other adult guests may attend with a $5 fee. All are welcome at this family-friendly event, but please check the official Pow-Wow website for more information, particularly Pow-Wow etiquette.

As this is a competition Pow-Wow, spectators can expect to see a variety of vibrant, high-energy dances performed, with prizes awarded for genres including Fancy Dance, Fancy Shawl, Jingle Dress, and Traditional dances, as well as a Hand Drum competition.  Additionally, all dancers are welcome to participate in non-competition segments of the event.

In support of the event, the Wolf Tales oral history team will be present at Pow-Wow, and invites all performers and guests to consider adding their stories of celebration and community to the Wolf Tales collection.  The Wolf Tales team also recorded stories during the 2017 Pow-Wow; including with Brittany Hunt, the former Assistant Director of Native American Student Affairs.

Those who choose to share their stories through the Wolf Tales program can speak about whatever they wish, but some optional prompts we will be using for the recording day include:

  • When did you first attend Pow-Wow at NC State?
  • Share a story of your favorite memory from Pow-Wow.
  • How would you describe the Native community at NC State?
  • What is the most important thing that people should know about Pow-Wow and this community, today and in the future?
  • Is there a person at NC State or Pow-Wow specifically whom you would like to thank?
  • What impact has this person had on you?
  • What are your hopes for Pow-Wow and the Native community at NC State in the future?
  • Is there anything else you'd like to share?

Wolf Tales will be recording between 2-6pm.  To sign up in advance, visit go.ncsu.edu/wolftalespowwow.  If you have any questions please contact <library_wolftales@ncsu.edu> or call 919-515-2603.

Researchers and community members wanting to know more about the history of Indigenous peoples at NC State can explore resources at the Special Collections Research Center, including digitized copies of The Technician, official records of the Multicultural Student Affairs office, and our Historical State Timeline on Native Americans at NC State.  However, researching the Native American campus community is an ongoing process of navigating decades of erasure and historical silences.  Libraries and schools have traditionally assisted with colonization and assimilation - including banning traditional Indigenous practices - so it is all the more important that we use our platform to amplify Native American voices and practices today.  Wolf Tales is one way we can actively address gaps in the historical record, and provide a means for people to take pride in recording their histories. Please consider sharing your unique story with us!

The Special Collections Research Center welcomes research enquiries from members of the public, and the wider campus community.  Additionally, if you are interested in making additions to the Historical State Timeline, donating records, or discussing giving records to the University Archives and SCRC, please contact us online.