ZHIIBAAHAASING—The 22nd annual Zhiibaahaasing First Nation Traditional Powwow provided a wonderful opportunity to bring together family, friends, visitors and guests to the community.
“That is what I’m talking about; the powwow, the dancing, the drums; it brings friends and family together,” stated Zhiibaahaasing First Nation Chief Irene Kells at the powwow held in the community August 25-26.
Chief Kells delivered her message on the beautiful Sunday afternoon of August 26 to the large gathering on hand to take in the celebrations. “I would like to welcome everyone to the community, all our families, friends and visitors,” she said.
“Ray (Jackson) had talked earlier about the young children and how important it is to have them here this weekend to take part, and learn about powwows,” said Chief Kells. “They will remember what they are seeing and hearing. We are all leaders by the way we behave, dance, and drum.”
“We have a lot of young people here today playing,” said Chief Kells. “You may think they are playing and not paying much attention to what us adults are doing in the powwow. They may not be watching but they are listening,” she said. “There were a few kids playing by the beach a couple of weeks ago and later they were playing on my front yard. They were having a ceremony and had a drum they were playing. They were having a ceremony with a little circle, so even when we think they are not watching, they are.”
“Kids are interested in everything,” said Chief Kells. “They are our people, our future and we are their teachers.” She noted the powwow brings people from all over. “One of my sons is here from Toronto. I didn’t know he was coming here with his family, but I’m very happy he did.”
“Have a beautiful day and share what you know about the powwow and our way of life with the children,” urged Chief Kells. “Share that love you have for each other.”
Chief Kells also provided a glimpse of the history of the community from its humble beginnings to current day and its continuing growth.
Bill Antoine noted the community has 21 houses and about 75 residents now, and the population is growing every year.
“Thank you to all the councillors, volunteers and community members and all those outside the community who helped to make the community what it is today,” said Chief Kells.
Guests on hand to participate in the powwow included newly-crowned junior princess Nova Waindubence from Sheguiandah who represented Whitefish River First Nation as a junior princess.
The host drum for the powwow was Northern Spirit, along with Little Creek and Young Biisineh.
The head dancers were Chelsea Antoine and Montana McGregor while Bill Antoine was the head veteran dancer for the weekend event. The head elders were Zhiibaahaasing Chief Irene Kells and Ray Jackson.
Sound and production for the powwow was provided by Destiny Rose Wabegijik and Trinity Simon, both teenagers.