TAYLOR, B.C. – The High on Ice festival is happening this weekend but there is also another event that people may be interested in.
“Bringing families together” is the name of the event which is a Round Dance as well as a feast and pipe ceremony.
Connie Greyeyes, event organizer, says there is plenty of activities planned for the evening and it is all free.
“Everyone is welcome of all ages. It is also a sober event. We will kick off the activities traditionally with the pipe ceremony at 4:00. It is basically a prayer for everyone and then after the pipe ceremony, we have a feast where everyone gets to sit down together and enjoy a meal. It is being prepared this year by the Spirit of the Peace Pow Wow Committee.”
Once the feast is finished, that is when the Round Dance starts.
“We have drummers coming from B.C., Alberta and some are from Saskatchewan and they are all Cree hand drummers. We also have the Doig drummers who are coming to do the opening welcome because this is traditionally their territory so we respect that this is their territory and that they are allowing us to hold this event on their territory.”
Once the feast is over, clean-up will begin and the drummers will proceed to warm up their drums. Once those two items are taken care of, the dance begins.
“This is different from a Pow Wow in that, all of the songs are sung to a Round Dance beat which is a double beat. Everybody holds hands and dances all night.”
There will also be 50/50 donations as well as door prizes at the dance. There will also be a giveaway that takes place.
Greyeyes says that the festivities can go as late (or early) as 5:00 in the morning.
“Some Round Dances go until 3:00, 4:00, 5:00 in the morning. Last year, I think we ended at 2:00 in the morning. We will have a midnight lunch if it runs late. It is also free.”
They also have a concession and local vendors that will be selling items such as bead work and other items.
Greyeyes says this is the second year the event is being held. She says last year, the first year, was the first time a Round Dance had really taken place in the area for a long time. She estimates that there were around 300 or so people that attended.
“It is open to anybody of any race. A lot of people mistake the Pow Wow and the Round Dances are only attended by Indigenous people but it is open to everyone.”
The Round Dance will take place at the Taylor Community Hall.