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|Thursday, 21 August, 2014|
Host drum Stoney Park composed a song in honor of the Shoshone-Bnnock Tribes. (Joseph Wadsworth photo)
By LORI EDMO-SUPPAH
FORT HALL — Shoshone-Bannock Festival Coordinator Rose Ann Abrahamson said she is amazed how everything came together for the annual event and she appreciates the hard work of all of the entities who were committed to showcase the Tribes.
She is also amazed at the turnout of the people as the event is promoted as one of the top 100 places to visit, “I believe we did it.”
Although Friday night started out with a cloudburst of rain she viewed it as a blessing to the people, “It renewed and cleansed everything.” She added one visitor viewed it as powerful.
Abrahamson said the quality of the dancers was top of the echelon as they came from the Midwest and even from the east. With the number of people attending she believes a bigger Festival grounds is needed, “We need to have more bleachers and extend the shading for seating for the spectators.” There also needs to be more designated pathways for the handicapped and the gaming arbor needs to be restructured. “With what we had, everyone was efficient but there needs to be expansion,” she continued.
Stoney Park, one of the host drums, composed a song for the Tribes. It includes Shoshone words, “Indian people dance hard — dance hard for the people.” She said it’s a most beautiful song and will go on to be legendary.
Lead singer Coleman Beaver of Stoney Park said he asked Rose Ann for some words in Shoshone language, “So we could make you guys a song so the tribe can enjoy and remember this time.” “We're also going to take it on the road and spread it everywhere we go.”
Beaver said he was at the Festival a long time ago when the old arbor was up and it was dusty. It was when his father was still alive but they lost him in 1994 and then their mother in 2003. The drum group quit singing for seven years because someone had to look after their property at home in Canada. In 2010, they came out again. He added Stoney Park is a family drum group that consists of his sons, along with his brother and his sons.
He said it was a pretty good powwow, “I enjoyed myself,” and they are on their way to Fort Thompson where they’re host drum. They will be on the road for the next four weeks.
Abrahamson said from the time the Festival budget was approved in March all of the entities did an awesome job.
Miss Indian World Taylor Thomas with U.S. Congressman Mike Simpson as he reds the Congressional Record document. (Roselynn Wahtomy photo)
By ROSELYNN WAHTOMY
FORT HALL – U.S. Congressman Mike Simpson presented Miss Indian World Taylor Thomas with the 2014 Congressional Record on Friday, August 8.
Simpson acknowledged Thomas as a good representative of the local community and for the state of Idaho.
In the Congressional Record document presented to Thomas, Simpson congratulates her for her achievement of Miss Indian World and said it was truly an honor for him to recognize Thomas for her national accomplishment and as a role model for the Fort Hall community.
“She will make an excellent representative of Native American culture throughout her tenure as Miss Indian World,” he states.
Simpson went on to praise Thomas for her commitment to higher education and her leadership amongst Native youth and promoting preserving tribal language.
“I wish Ms. Thomas well as she travels across the United States in her role as Miss Indian World. It is a great honor for the Fort Hall community, the Shoshone-Bannock Tribes, and my congressional district to have such a talented young woman represent her community on a world stage,” the document states.
Thomas is the second Shoshone-Bannock tribal member to be given this honor; U.S. Senator Mike Crapo recognized the late Walter Nevada for it in 2007.
Reciprocating the gesture, Thomas also presented Simpson with a portrait of her and hug. Simpson said the photo would hang in his office.
Thomas was present throughout the powwow taking part in grand entries and intertribals, but also took the chance to pose for photos with anyone making a request.
A Meet and Greet honoring her as Miss Indian World, as well as Miss Indian Nations Alexandria Alvarez took place on Saturday, August 9 in a tent north of the Festival Arbor.
A line formed of fans from all ages to meet the queens who signed autographs.