AUNDECK OMNI KANING—The dancers, drummers, vendors and spectators at the annual Aundeck Omni Kaning traditional powwow couldn’t have asked for better weather to kick off the start of the powwow season earlier this month.
The parking stretched far and wide on the outskirts of the powwow grounds with visitors scrambling to find a spot before the start of grand entry on the Saturday opening day. The traditional powwow, which is so often known for its rainy days, was blessed by the Creator with sunny skies and a spectacular view of the Wabano Channel as dancers moved to the sound of the drums.
“I’m glad to see so many people here today,” said Chief Patsy Corbiere in her welcoming address, following the grand entry. “Last year we prayed hard and this year the Creator blessed us with good weather,” she added, thanking powwow coordinator Stephen Nahwegahbow for all of his hard work in organizing another great event.
Anishinabek Nation Grand Council Chief Patrick Madahbee brought greetings on behalf of the chiefs he represents, explaining to the crowd that the Anishinabek Nation takes in 39 First Nations from Golden Lake in the east, Sarnia in the south and Thunder Bay and Lake Nipigon in the north.
“It’s been a busy season, with lots of chiefs’ meetings,” Chief Madahbee said. “Please forgive your leaders for not being here, as they are discussing some heavy duty items at the local, provincial and national levels.”
He called Manitoulin “the most beautiful place in the world” and welcomed powwow visitors to the Island—mnidoo mnissing
Following an introduction of the head dancers, both junior and elder, Thunder Earth started the sunny afternoon with a welcoming song.