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Schemitzun just another pow wow?

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  • Schemitzun just another pow wow?

    Remember when Schemitzun was the "be all and end all" of pow wows? When everyone who was anyone and every drum group just had to be present at this celebration? When you saved your cash to buy your ticket, pay for your room at Two Trees, then the Towers, then the Cedars and had to wait for the shuttle to take you out to the casino and then you were okay from there? When Thursday night specials were so cool to watch because you were dancing for 2,000 bucks on the first night? Remember when it was in Hartford and we 49'd on the state capitol lawn? Then out to the casino at the "dome"?
    This used to be the ultimate pow wow to go to just because everyone else thought it was the ultimate pow wow too. Seems like everyone, drums and dancers, pretty much went home to their own celebrations instead of making the trip out east. That trophy would be the coolest thing to take home on the plane and get all the questions from the non-indians all the way home. LOL
    What is lacking? Travel expense, hotel expense, not enough dance or drum money to make worth your time and effort? I think 1500 bucks is pretty much the norm for any home celebration(except in Oklahoma, haha)
    Does anyone besides me think the Schemitzun era has pretty much passed? from 1994 til now it sort of just winded down, or out?
    I am thankful for my grandparents, my parents, my brothers, my aunties and uncles, my children, my companion and all of those who influenced me to be strong and proud of being who I am and where I come from. Knowledge is power

  • #2
    Well.....I think its a combination of things. First, the gas prices. I know some of us who travel 8 or more hours to a powwow spend $100's of dollars. Shoot, I just only went to Window Rock last weekend and spent nearly 100 just for one night...being $50.00 for a full tank of gas. I know I had to limit myself to just local or semi-local powwows. *S*. Plus I think the fact there was no drum competition ....was another thing. Then, I know some families make the decision of what BIG Powwows they are gonna attend this year, maybe Schemitzun wasn't gonna be on that list. Then there are other good powwows besides Schemitzun around the country, for one, Ute Mountain Casino (big payout powwow with drum contest), Southern Cali Indian Center, Ummmmm I am sure tons more (I know there is a list on the calendar). I know that all the big name drums and dancers sure didn't come out to the Albs Indian Center for their 3 hour back to school powwow...LOL. But hey Zotigh made it, same with Sacred Path ...besides the host drums, we had alot of fun. I personally never really saw what all the hoopla was about for Schemitzun when its just hard enuff to deal with GON in your back yard...LOL
    You have crossed my path, You will never be forgotten......

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    • #3
      Although, I've never been there, I've always heard people rave about it and get all hyped up about attending. Now it seems like they feel its just another powwow, imo, anyways.


      • #4
        Just anutter powwow

        That powwow was the bomb back in the day, they took care of everyone and accomodated the powwow people. But look they had just recently been recognized, they catered to the other NDN's so they could be easily accepted. Now that they are accepted by the rest of us skins, there's no need to layout the red carpet. They got the acceptance they wanted.

        Do others feel this way or am I just totally off.

        Talk to me people.


        • #5
          My Two Cents...

          o.k., now...the 1st time I went to Schemitzun I too thought it was just kool...really expensive but kool. The following year, I thought that I would 'let my hair down' alittle and really enjoy the weekend...little did we know that their "BIA Police" osifers would be patrolling the grounds of the 49...AND...just so happened that a member of my family was busted. Anyhoo.. to make a very long story was a totally bogus bust and a big expensive waste of our time... I am still pi**ed. The next day at the pow wow when I heard them announcing that there would be 'another mystical production by Chris at the gravel pit.." it just incited me more. I would NEVER let any kind of police bother the 49'ers who come to our pow wows (only if there was a real need), that was just too much...what I personally witnessed at that 49 - that tribe should be looking at their own peeps to control...not bothering the guests.
          "Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind. ~Dr. Seuss


          • #6
            for several years Schemitzun was THE pow wow to go to here on the east coast. for years there were sooo many drums, one couldn't walk around the arena without tripping over a singer or a drum. the last 4 or 5 years the vibe at schemitzun was vastly differant.


            • #7
              I gotta agree sltate......that pow wow used to be DA BOMB!!! *sighs* Remembering.....

              Remember when it was $3K for first place??? and then remember people said there were ballots laying all over the floor of that little trailer? I know that next year attendance dropped dramatically.

              Yeah prize money has dropped significantly and it is just too expensive to bring your whole family out there......especially if you are driving. Now there's no showers for campers???

              Well, I still want to go only because I have family out there, but if they weren't there....I'd be happy staying home.

              The 49 has also dropped in attendance (so I've heard ) .....yeah it USED to be the it has fizzled.
              It does not require many words to speak the truth.
              Chief Joseph


              • #8
                this is a guess. probably what happened there is what happened at our casino. the powwow *fizzled* but other events took off. the fishing tournament cost a bizillion dollors and is well attended by everybody. the concerts are sooo damm nice. but basically the lawyers and casino reps got involved and the powwow wasnt as important anymore. our powwow isnt even on the same level than schemitzun. i see the casino over there hosting premieres for movies and it seems like they are always in ESPN hosting billards tournaments for the men and women. dollar wise i think they get more doing those kind of events, plus they get nationial exposure. lol, *its just a guess*
                thanks dad for showing me the way, teaching me the language, and not leaving my mother...*L*

                *RoUg3 MoD sTaTuS*


                • #9
                  That's probably true, but I think that we, meaning natives, have to remember WHO we are and, WHY we even have casinos. That's nice that they have all that success and national exposure, but remember who you are......... Yeah, pow wows aren't big money makers, they cost a lot of money to sponsor, but we should be proud of who we are and show others how proud we are and host to the best of our abilities. Now I know tribal politics play a big role in this, so it's easier said than done. My two cents anyways......
                  It does not require many words to speak the truth.
                  Chief Joseph


                  • #10
                    The big $$$$ payouts brought out mostly all of the powwow troops. But to me and my experience, it seemed the powwow like any other powwow had their favorites which ruined you getting a fair chance. Just as you mentioned "just another powwow".

                    No doubt the $3000 first place payouts were well worth it. But for most people today you would have to win at least 800-1000 just to break even and it is only going to get worse. Gas prices has hit big time.

                    One thing I keep seeing is the same drums being invited. Seems like Redbull was always on there as well as Cozad. Nothing against either of these drum groups or ones who are always there, but dang there are others very capable.

                    Yup Schmitz isn't what it use to be, but then again back in the mid- 90's they laid it out big time. Most drum groups had free rooms and a dancer could get in as well for a discounted price. Shuttle service was free, even the eats were free and they had some good eats at that.

                    I would pay 12-15 drum groups 10-15k to be invited with 3 free rooms. I would offer 2500-2000-1800-1500-1000 payouts with 3 $500 consolations, you would definitely get most of the dancers back. It's a lot of $$$ but hey this is Foxwoods we are talking about, they have it.

                    Also, hook up the showers and fix up the camp grounds and you'd get more campers.

                    I'll probably never go back. I enjoy the powwows, from Kinder, Oklahoma powwows, Macy, Mt Pleasant, Shakopee, Prairie Island, United Tribes, Rocky Boy, Crow, GON, Soboba to San Manuel etc...for my dollar.


                    • #11
                      I agree....

                      Used to be that everybody and their mama and their mama's cousins were at this pow-wow. Last time I was there, Black Lodge took home the triple threat crown and like $70,000 dollars. I remember they say "When she dances by, she makes me smile, aww shucks, those pretty eyes..." That was lovely. Then Randy P was singing with them too, and he took first in men's grass, and he was so happy he was crying...then Tiff had us crying cuz she was crying cuz he was crying...oh that was lovely. Yeah that powwow was the bomb back in the m.f.'ing old days. Too bad, so sad.
                      The true meaning of life........

                      Life is all about a$$; you're either covering it, laughing it off,
                      kicking it, kissing it, busting it, trying to get a piece of it, or
                      behaving like one.


                      • #12
                        schmitzun (spelling???)

                        Ummm i never been there but wasn't there like 10 places there before??? My friend was all proud when she placed 10th there, i was happy for her too.

                        Oh and isn't that pow wow the celebration of corn or something???? I seen a video from that pow wow.


                        • #13
                          that poster from schmitzun shows up once a year to post their flyer. i wish theyd make some kind of statement. lol, maybe theyre just doing something differnt and here we are *alll over reacting* accusing them of gettin cheap on us. when in reality theyre trying to spread the love or taking a break from the big time. lol, this is dumb..
                          thanks dad for showing me the way, teaching me the language, and not leaving my mother...*L*

                          *RoUg3 MoD sTaTuS*


                          • #14
                            Once I make $30.00 an hour, and can afford paid days off, I'd still go.

                            And yeah, I used to think of Schemitzun as the " end of the year bang". I think of it as no big loss if I don't make it. It's just anotha powwow now.
                            Mr Oakley was here

                            see my powwow videos here...


                            • #15
                              There was a time when I could enter:

                              The singing contest,
                              49 contest,
                              Hand game contest,
                              Fancy dance contest,
                              4-directions all around contest,
                              2-step contest,
                              Trick song contest,
                              Hoop dance contest and
                              the basketball tournament

                              Then after the powwow go and eat, to the casino, the club and 49!

                              All the big names were there! Women were beading new outfits up til' the times of their contest so they could have a new outfit!

                              The grand entry took over an hour!


                              Those days are gone.

                              I don't think I'll go back. . .
                              Powwows will continue to evolve in many directions. It is inevitable.


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