Powwow coming to Raisin Township June 29-30

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Ceremonial dancing and community bonfire are scheduled at this year’s powwow.

Mitchell Park in Raisin Township will be the site of the Art Brant Memorial Powwow on Saturday, June 29, and Sunday, June 30. Gates will open at 10 a.m. and proceeds from the $6 admission to the event will benefit the Leh Nah Weh Native American organization. Children under eight who attend with an adult get in free.

The group approached Raisin Township officials last fall concerning the possibility of holding a powwow in the park. Leh Nah Weh president Abel “Cool Wind Bear” Cooper told the board that the group had been looking for a way to come back to the Tecumseh area. Powwows had been held at Cal Zorn Park for a few years, but the group outgrew that space and moved to the Lenawee County Fair and Event Grounds, but had found costs too prohibitive for them after a couple of years.

“We’d like the opportunity to be closer to the old Native American ceremonial grounds,” Cooper also told the Raisin Township trustees in September. “The mounds may not be there but the spirit of the Indian people still exists in those areas and these were ceremonial grounds as far back as people remember.” Cooper said bringing the powwows back to the area would be something that would benefit the Len Nah Weh organization and powwow participants as well as the community.

Next week’s event is a memorial powwow to honor Art Brant, a founding member of Leh Nah Weh, who also served as head of security for the group and worked toward educating the public on Native American culture at all levels, including approaching the state to establish education programs.

Raisin Township Parks and Recreation Director, Debra Brousseau, who also serves as a trustee on the board, said in the Native American culture, it is believed that when someone walks into the spiritual world, they stay with family for a year and then have a special ceremony to release them.

“This powwow is going to include special songs and activities for Art Brant’s family,” Brousseau said.

The public is invited to the family-friendly event, which will include arts and crafts demonstrations and wares, along with storytelling, children’s games, and Native American ceremonies and dancing.

Brousseau said that the township is pleased to be able to host this event, which will be held toward the back of the park in the vicinity of the soccer fields. She said there would be two entrance gates.

“If they come in off Gady Road, there will be parking near the softball fields,” Brousseau said.

Mitchell Park is located on Green Highway and Gady Road.

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