Nya: Weh Indian Village

Blaine Tallchief, MC shows Indian Village explains the smoke dance. It is a competition style dance. He says it’s not just the competition between the dancers themselves but between the dancers and the singers. Singers can have trick songs. There may be stomping stops in the song where the dancers also need to stomp. He explains the importance of the turtle mound and says that the turtle is very important in their culture.

Mel is in Nya: Weh Indian village where there are eight trading posts. They represent the eight different clans. Blaine says they have these clans that are pretty much a family within a family. There are the bear, the turtle, the hawk, the snake, the heron, the wolf, the deer and the beaver, and whatever clan your mother is, that’s what you are.

Blaine explains the meaning of their flag. The squares of the flag represent the nations within their confederacy. The first square is the Seneca nation, the second is the Cayuga nation, the sign in the middle is their central light, this is the Onondaga nation, the next square is the Oneida nation followed by the Mohawk nation. The lines between the squares show that the nations are connected. Blaine says the lines at the end represent that any nation that wants to be part of their confederation can do so but they must follow our confederation guidelines. They must govern themselves according to their language and their culture.

For more information on the Erie County Fair, visit ecfair.org

Christina A. Kroll

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