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GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — The powwow grounds became completely silent on Saturday afternoon right before the grand entry of the Grand Valley American Indian Lodge’s 60th Annual Powwow at Riverside Park, in Grand Rapids, Mich. to observe a moment of silence in commemoration of the 20th anniversary of 9/11.

“It was amazing how the park was completely silent,” Lori Shustha, director of the Grand Valley American Indian Lodge (GVAIL) said to Native News Online. The GVAIL wanted people to remember the importance of the day.

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Saturday’s event was the first powwow held in Grand Rapids in two years because both annual powwows, the GVAIL and the Homecoming of the Three Fires Powwow, were canceled last year due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Held every June, the Homecoming of the Three Fires Powwow was also canceled this year because of the ongoing pandemic in the state of Michigan. 

Shustha was pleased with the size of the crowd on Saturday. There were long lines into the parking lot and to purchase food. 

The powwow continues on Sunday, Sept. 12 with the grand entry beginning at 12 noon. Masks are encourged. 

Grand Entry on Saturday afternoon before a large crowd. (Photo/Levi Rickert)

 

Traditional male dancers. (Photo/Levi Rickert)

 

Little River Band of Ottawa Tribal Councilor Ron Wittenberg carries in his tribe's eagle staff. (Photo/Levi Rickert)

 

10-month-old Ojibwe attends her first powwow. (Photo/Levi Rickert)

 

The powwow continues on Sunday in Grand Rapids, Mich. (Photo/Levi Rickert)

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