Three main events Sept. 22
In its third year, the Traditional Powwow at Rock Ledge Ranch may grow again, according to Jim (Blackwolf) Ramirez, one of its organizers.
The event Saturday, Sept. 22 could draw as many as 5,000 attendees, compared with 3,700 last year, he predicted, plus an increase from the 30 tribes that participated.
“It should be a blast,” Ramirez predicted.
Part of the reason for the expected upsizing is the local gathering's growing reputation and “positive feedback,” he said. “We've actually had e-mails from around the world. We even have a group from France that will be coming.”
There also will be less competition for the Rock Ledge event - a powwow that had been planned for early September in Woodland Park has been cancelled, Ramirez noted..
The show will begin at 10 a.m. and continue till 5 p.m. Admission is $8, with discounts for seniors and children aged 6 to 17. Ages 5 and under get in free. Free parking is available in the Rock Ledge lot off Gateway Road at 30th Street.
The powwow will open with live drumming and the ceremonial gourd dance for warriors or war veterans. The Grand Entry, which will introduce all the participating tribes, is set for 1 p.m., with different types of “friendship dances” occurring through the rest of the afternoon.
Also featured will be flute players, a birds of prey exhibit and pony rides.
One area where organizers are limiting growth is in the number of vendors. Ramirez said that number has been capped at about 25 to give all those selling at the Powwow a chance to earn a sufficient amount of revenue.
The Rock Ledge Powwow is a fundraiser for both the ranch and the Colorado Springs Indian Center, which is a lead group in the planning.
The master of ceremonies will be Eugene (Redhawk) Orner, a Westside resident and Vietnam War veteran.
A Garden of the Gods powwow had been an annual event through 1978, but did not resume until 2010 when the powwow at Rock Ledge came together.
Westside Pioneer/press release