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Powwow Protocol

During the Powwow

The open area in the middle of the gym is called the “arena”. Please do not enter the arena unless invited and/or instructed to do so. The chairs around the arena are reserved for the dancers, drum groups, and their families. Guests are welcome to sit in the bleacher section. We respect and honor our elders; please give them first priority seating and accommodations.

All are welcome to dance during the intertribal and social dances. The Master of Ceremonies (MC) will announce these rounds and invite guests to enter the arena.

Grand Entry

There are three grand entries during the Powwow. Please stand and remove hats until the procession has stopped and the prayer has been completed.

Pictures and Recording

Taking pictures and recording is allowed during much of the Powwow. However, there are certain times when taking pictures or recording songs is not allowed. The Master of Ceremonies will advise guests when NOT to take pictures. For example, pictures and/or recordings are NOT allowed during prayers and/or honor songs.  Feel free to ask someone if you are uncertain. Always ask permission of individual dancers or drum groups for their permission to be photographed. Please refrain from any activity that will interfere or interrupt a dancer or drum group.


Feel free to applaud during the dance contests. If you would like to honor a specific dancer with a gift or donation, please inform a staff member or the Master of Ceremonies.


Please smoke only in the designated areas outside.