A Native American powwow gathering is a celebration of heritage and traditions. It is a way for Native Americans to connect with each other while keeping their culture alive through dance, song and storytelling. For those events that are open to the public, Native American powwow gatherings provide opportunities to educate non-natives about their culture and traditions. While powwow gatherings occur year-round, the majority are held between Memorial Day and Labor Day throughout the US and Canada. They are an important part of Native American life and lots of fun for all who attend. For a list of powwow gatherings, see our Native American Powwow Calendar.
The Men's Fancy dance (also referred to as Feather Dance) competition is usually considered the most spectacular of the men's powwow dances. It is often performed by younger, athletic dancers because of the strength and stamina required. Fancy Dance contest songs are normally short, with a very fast tempo. While all contest dancers need to know the songs to stop firmly on that last beat, it's especially important for a Fancy Dancer as 'nailing' the end of a very fast song is almost impossible without knowing the song.
Men's Fancy Dance outfits seen at powwow gatherings are brightly colored, with fringes, ribbons or other items flowing constantly with the movements of the dancer. Most dancers wear two colorful feather bustles in back, elaborate beadwork, dance apron, moccasins, and Angora goat or Icelandic sheep half leggings usually topped by sheep bells. A porcupine roach with two feathers that rock (or twirl) to the beat is usually worn as are two arm bustles with brightly colored feathers to match the bustles worn on back.
Crazy Crow Trading Post has long been your number one source for Native American craft supplies for your powwow gathering regalia and other needs. This photo gallery represents men's Fancy Dance outfits, both Northern and Southern Plains, mostly taken at Gathering of Nations Powwows in Albuquerque, New Mexico. We thank Derek Matthews of Gathering of Nations, and others who have given permission to present these photos in this gallery.
Crazy Crow Trading Post - Native American Powwow Gathering Crafts Supplies for Powwow Dance Clothes & Accessories!