39th Annual Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe Powwow in 2023!
Located at the tribal campground: 7529 E Tomah Rd, Mount Pleasant, read more below.
For 38 years the Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe holds an annual Powwow each summer. Powwows are a celebration of American Indian culture. People from diverse indigenous nations gather for dancing, singing, and honoring the traditions of their ancestors.
Saginaw Chippewa Tribe Powwow is open for the public to attend and takes place at the tribal campground: 7529 E Tomah Rd, Mount Pleasant.
“The campground is affectionately known to local community members as “The Hill.” Memories of ancestors, loved ones, and years gone by are sheltered among the canopy of oaks, maples, white ash, and cottonwood trees that grace the landscape. Located on a no-outlet road, The Hill is generally a quiet and peaceful campground with a calming breeze and shaded sites to keep you comfortable. The Hill has long been a place for Tribal members to come and relax with friends.”
Growing up in Central Michigan, Native American influence has always been around. I took for granted the access I had to these amazing cultural experiences for far too long, but I am intrigued to learn more and fully embracing what is right here locally.
The tribal land for Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe is located in Mt. Pleasant, Michigan. The reservation is a fully functioning unit which includes tribal police and fire rescue, as well as Soaring Eagle Casino & Resort, Ziibiwing Anishnabe Culture Museum, a Campground and Soaring Eagle Waterpark.
Find traditional goods and ware, from blankets, jackets, jewelry, dream catchers and more. There are many unique makers and artisans presented at the Powwow.
Before the dance competitions, the Powwow begins with an opening ceremony, called Grand Entrance. It is a group march, honoring those who have served in the US military. Each individual veteran carried a flag as they circled the perimeter of the stadium ring, each flag representing a different nation or group of people.
Following the flag carriers, were all of the dance competition participants. Everyone circled the ring, dancing for all the spectators to see. Each dancer dressed head to toe in traditional garb. Flawless and ready for the stage. It was amazing to see how intricate, colorful and unique each garment iss with bells, feathers, embroidery and embellishments.
Before the dance competition began, there was an “open” dance for anyone to participate called Intertribal. My beautiful Saginaw Chippewa friend invited us out to dance with her family. It was a moment I will never forget. Here is my little 2-year-old dancing in his first Powwow, dancing with first nations folx from all over the USA & Canada!
In the middle of the dance ring, are the drum circles. A very large drum is in the middle of the drummers, who sing in native tongue, while beating a heavy “drumstick” in unison. The sounds carries and echoes all throughout, the bass of the drum can be felt in your chest! Several drum groups are present and also competing for money at the Powwow as well.
I had to try the food, unfortunately the only thing I photographed before devouring, was the Veggie Pizza. Frybread and Indian Tacos were some of the most popular traditional items to choose from at the Lunch Box. Take a look at the menu! There were several other food vendors and food trucks there as well.
On my 2022 visit, I noticed only one food vendor who took Credit/Debit cards, so be sure to bring cash or download cashapp.
Ever since I can remember, well since 1996 to be exact, I have been enjoying all that Soaring Eagle has to offer! I have stayed at Soaring Eagle Resort more times than I can count. I’ve went to countless concerts at Soaring Eagle Casino and celebrated so many birthdays there.
Located on Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe Reservation in Mt. Pleasant, Michigan. There is entertainment for the whole family, as well as other properties to explore, including a Cultural Museum, Waterpark and Campground.
Learn about my visit at Ziibiwing Center. Part of the Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe in Mt. Pleasant. As a Culture Center, designed and dedicated to the Anishinabe people, a celebration of history, tradition and beliefs.