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Ft. Hamby Pow Wow Sept. 16-17

Article Published: Sep. 15, 2011 | Modified: Sep. 19, 2011
Ft. Hamby Pow Wow Sept. 16-17

The Ft. Hamby Pow Wow returns to Wilkesboro Sept. 16-17.
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The Ft. Hamby Pow Wow returns to the High Country Sept. 16, inviting folks to gather their wagons, come early and stay all day.

Designed as an educational event, the pow wow, hosted at Ft. Hamby in Wilkesboro, offers visitors the chance to learn about Native American culture.

“Whether it is how to dance or how we lived or made things, it will be new information to most,” spokesperson Mabel Benjamin said.

Schools are invited to come Friday, Sept. 16, for Kids Day, as educational activities for children will be provided by organizers and the Ft. Hamby park rangers. Children’s activities will also be available on Saturday, Sept. 17, including teepees to examine, stories to hear and arts and crafts, like making leather bags and dream catchers.

Flint knappers will demonstrate how arrowheads and spear points are made, and there will also be lodges and tipis for visitors to experience firsthand how Native Americans lived. Activities like dancing, drumming, singing, storytelling and music will be alternating during the day.

Benjamin also offered a word of advice: “During the dance sessions, when the emcee says, ‘intertribal,’ that means ‘everybody dance,’ even you.”

On Friday, during Kids Day, the children will be asked to participate in the dancing. The boys will learn “the stealth of the warrior” from the head man, and the girls will learn the “dignity and grace” of the traditional lady dancer from the head lady.

Even the teachers will be asked to participate.

“Sometimes we ask the teachers to compete to see who the best is, and the children are the judges,” Benjamin said.

The pow wow will take place inside Ft. Hamby Park, located six miles north of Wilkesboro on U.S. 421, just north of mile marker 293. Turn south on South Recreation Road to the park entrance.

Admission to the park is $1. Admission to the Pow Wow is $5 for adults. Friday is Kids day, and children are admitted free when visiting with school.

The park opens at 8 a.m., and the Ft. Hamby Pow Wow starts at 9 a.m. Regular hours are from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. On Friday, activities for the children start as soon as the schools arrive and continue until the last bus leaves. Then, the pow wow returns to regular activities.

For information on reserving camping spots, contact the park at (877) 444-6777. For more information on the pow wow, or to volunteer, call Mabel Benjamin at (813) 765-3073 or ranger Juanita Souther at (336) 921-3390.

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