“The mission of Great Promise for American Indians is to preserve the traditions, heritage and culture of American Indians, and to support the health and education needs of their youth and families. We do this to honor the past, and to ensure the future.”

I enjoyed attending the 25th annual Austin Powwow and American Indian Heritage Festival in November. Shown above is an Instagram I could not resist taking, a dancer in traditional clothing taking a little time off to check his mobile device. It made me smile. To reach my Google+ photo and video album from this year’s event, follow this link.

By way of background:

“A modern pow wow is a specific type of event for Native American/First Nations people to meet and dance, sing, socialize, and honor their cultures. Pow wows may be private or public. There is generally a dancing competition, often with significant prize money awarded. Pow wows vary in length from a one-day event, to major pow wows called for a special occasion which can be up to one week long.” – Wikipedia

After a somewhat grueling but productive year in the trenches of nonprofit fundraising here in Texas, attending the event was a refreshing and inspiring experience. Young people and adults competed in colorful Native American dances. One of my favorite dances was the Intertribal, during which people of all “tribes” – including the audience – were invited down to the arena floor to dance together.

Did you know,

“Most of the various types of dances performed at a pow wow are descended from the dances of the Plains tribes of Canada and the United States. Besides those for the opening and closing of a pow wow session, the most common is the intertribal, where a Drum will sing a song and anyone who wants to can come and dance.”

I joined the dancers myself this year, and while marching along, I filmed one of my first Facebook Live videos. You can enjoy it on my Facebook page.

I was inspired by my fellow Intertribal dance participants, of all ages and cultural backgrounds, dancing along peacefully together in an impressive show of unity and community.

As the dust settles on the Presidential Election, it occurs to me our nation as a whole needs an “Intertribal.” I hope all Americans will come together after this contentious election season and work together to ensure that our nation remains the greatest on Earth. We can do it!

Did you know? You can request an Indian dance team for your school. Follow this link to Red Voices.

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