Monday, September 27, 2010

Lettin' 'Er Buck!!!!!

Pendleton Round Up...

Just the phrase alone has myriads of meanings to each individual...the week was frought with many feelings of impending disaster, for truly, last year's event was tragic and left a lot of Indians feeling sad and at a loss. At last year's Round-Up a stabbing occurred, gang related and involving a lot of our tribal youth. This year many measures were taken to ensure safety, these were of course met with stone-cold faces for as much as we like our independence, we don't like to "be told what to do and when to do it."

On to the you'll note from my pictures, the certain parts of the event are more dear to my heart than others:-)

Historically, the Pendleton Round Up started in 1910. This was the 100th year and as such was slated as the event of a lifetime. Indians had a history of participating since it's inception...please look that up for there are many more interesting pictures than I can provide here:-)

I wanted to share about the beauty pageant and I as I was reading other reviews I came across these words WHICH ARE NOT MINE - THEY ARE EXCERPTED FROM AN EAST OREGONIAN NEWSPAPER ARTICLE:
By ERIN MILLS East Oregonian

Like an enchanted maze, the Indian Village on the morning of the Junior American Indian Beauty Pageant revealed a gem around every corner.

Standing near her family’s teepee, each contestant soaked up the diligent attention of her female relatives. Braided, furred, dressed, belted, beaded and moccasined, she bloomed into a classic Indian maiden of the Columbia Plateau.

Their dresses were handed down from their grandmothers, their belts carefully beaded by moms and aunties. They were drenched in history. But for most of them, the beauty pageant was all about feeling pretty.

“It’s fun because I don’t get to dress up like this a lot,” said L’Rissa Sohappy as her mother, LeAnn Alexander, tucked and polished her regalia.

“I can see all the regalia and see other people’s regalia — it’s so pretty,” said Julia Ikeandrews, 8, a Yakama Nation member from White Swan, Wash.

Julia wore a beaded belt, cuffs and leggings handed down from her great-grandmother and her grandmother’s breastplate. Her mother, Raye Ikeandrews, said Julia is excited to dress up every year. They always travel to Pendleton for the Round-Up, she said.

“I wouldn’t miss it for the world,” she said.

Many families still reunite at the Indian Village every year from all over southeastern Washington, northeastern Oregon and Idaho. Traditionally, a family camps in one section of the village year after year.

Teepees are not a traditional dwelling of Plateau Indians, but sleeping under a circle of poles, surrounded by family, still feels like a return to traditional times.

“You get up in the morning, look around and it’s kind of like you’re stepping back in time,” said Wilson Totus, a member of the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation.

The morning of the beauty pageant, Totus was busy looking after his young grandchildren, a few of whom were getting ready for the event. He no longer rides in the relay races or performs in Happy Canyon, he said, but the Indian Village is important — it’s all about family.

Other key parts of the Round Up included the Dancing in the Park:

For all the dancers there has to be drummers, some of THESE are my brothers!

Below is my good friend Tut who although pretty young carries with her the wisdom of ages and the grace of a woman who knows her world and freely walks it. She didn't win but she should have...
Round up was full of fun and excitement - I had the honor or driving around the golf carts so some of the Elders didn't have to walk very far. It was an amazing task because some of these elders had the most astounding and fun stories to tell! The flip side was that of course I had to hear about all the complaints they had as well...I'm perfectly happy to take the good along with the bad!

The carnival was part of the festivities and here's a quick fact: the carnival that comes to this event is the same one I used to work for in the 70's.

I would be remiss in not sharing the visits I had with the many horses in attendance at the Round Up...

My favorite horse as it turns out, was ridden by CTUIR General Council Chairman AH. The horse's name is Bart although upon our first meeting I asked him (the horse) about several other names. Bart missed me when I didn't come by to kiss his velvety nose, and would talk to the other horses about me "you know that one girl? the one who calls us by other names but gives us kisses?" "No, you're crazy, I only know MY girl who tried to talk to me (using clucks and clicks) but I don't quite get her..." We went to feed Bart one night and grabbed some hay from the stack at the end of the line where the Percherons stayed and one of the big golden giants whuffled at us "excuse me, that's OURS, would you please put it BACK?" so I handed him a handful and he JERKED it out of my hand...."THANK YOU that's GOOD but please put the other BACK"

I could actually go on and on about the horses and their conversations but Round Up was a week ago and I already have a NEW story to shared...
Hope you had a good weekend!


Alice in Wonderland said...

I love your blog....the photo's, the history of your traditions, your writing....and your happy sense of humour!
Something special did happen that day when you were drawn to my blog! Gosh, that seems so long ago now!!!

Big, big hugs, my dear friend!
(and a cup of tetleys with ginger...I have a chest infection and feeling pretty yuk!)

BB said...

Hi Shawna
I wouldn´t call frivolities to the things that catch your eye, they are indeed the very pearl of the amazing stories you share with the rest of us.
Been improving (trying to)my knowledge of the English language with blogs like yours, and it´s always great to read you and listen to your thoughts and stories.
Sorry for any mispelled grammar here and there.
Be well my friend, and thankyou for the warmth of your words and friendship.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing this link, but unfortunately it seems to be offline... Does anybody have a mirror or another source? Please answer to my post if you do!

I would appreciate if a staff member here at could post it.


flying eagle woman said...

Thanks Heather and BB for your kind words as usual! Heather, I hope you're feeling much better?

Jules, I'm not sure which link you're referring to or I'd gladly share it:-)