Heart of Youth community powwow returns virtually Friday

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Dancers perform at the 2018 Heart of the Youth Pow Wow at Kinsmen Park. (Herald file photo)

The annual Heart of Youth Community Pow Wow returns virtually after a year-long hiatus due to COVID-19 on Friday, May 28, which is also Community Pow Wow Day in Prince Albert. Although the format is different, Elder Liz Settee is happy to see it return as a virtual event,

“It’s good to keep the momentum of the powwow going with the virtual powwow, although it will definitely be different from Kinsmen Park,” Settee said.

“At least it’s happening. We had nothing last year.

The committee thought it was important that we do something this year,” added Settee.

She expects to experience her usual emotions on the day of the powwow.

“(I’m) very excited, also nervous, but I’m also nervous on the morning of the powwow. I think that’s an integral part of putting together something this big,” Settee said.

According to Settee, the organizing committee discussed holding the powwow at Kinsmen Park and had already reserved a tent for the occasion.

“And then as the numbers grew it was ‘no, we have to find another way to do this’, and so I canceled the tent and the other things I had already booked and we decided to go virtual and we found Big Drum Media,” she explained.

She explained that for the production, they wrote a script and had to space out the grand entrance due to COVID-19 regulations. They will appear in the normal order of flags, committee and community members, then dancers, which was filmed over several hours by the production company.

“It was all done at different times, but it’s going to look like it all.”

The event was also recognized by the official proclamation of May 28 as Community Pow Wow Day at Monday’s regular meeting of the city council. Settee said Mayor Greg Dionne has already forwarded the certificate of proclamation for the day before the meeting.

“They recognize the day, they already recognized that when the committee approached the city council, they all agreed it was important, so it’s a done deal now,” she said.

Settee said it was nice to receive such positive feedback from the city.

The Powwow will be available on the PA Outreach and CBYF Prince Albert YouTube pages beginning at 9:35 a.m. with the list of sponsors, then the Powwow will open at 10 a.m.

Settee hopes to see the Powwow return to normal next year.

“That way we can keep everyone safe and next year I hope and pray we’ll be back at Kinsmen Park. I think we will be stronger next year,” she said.

“And I think being on YouTube with a bigger, broader reach is going to help.”

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