The University of Iowa
The University of Iowa News Services Home News Releases UI in the News Subscribe to UI News Contact Us


100 Old Public Library
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 384-0011; fax (319) 384-0024

Release: April 4, 2000

Annual UI Powwow, American Indian Arts and Crafts Festival is April 7-9

IOWA CITY, Iowa – The 11th Annual University of Iowa Powwow and American Indian Arts and Crafts Festival will be held April 7-9, at Carver-Hawkeye Arena. The event, organized by the UI American Indian Student Association, runs from 5-11 p.m. April 7, from 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Saturday, April 8, and from 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Sunday April 9.

The UI Powwow is one of the largest student events on the UI campus and in previous years has drawn 7,000 people to Carver-Hawkeye Arena. Powwows are popular social events for Indian people across the country. They are a chance for American Indian peoples to get together to socialize and share dancing and music.

The UI Powwow will also feature Native American arts and crafts, as Native vendors display and sell their work. There will also be plenty of American Indian food favorites such as fry bread, Indian Tacos, and traditional stews.

The UI Powwow is a competitive powwow, which means that dancers and drum groups will be competing in a number of different categories. These categories include Men's and Women's Traditional, Men's Fancy Bustle, Women's Fancy Shawl, Men's Grass Dance, Women's Jingle Dance, Men's Straight Dance, and Women's Southern Cloth and Buckskin, as well as children's categories. Each of these dances requires a distinctive style of footwork and clothing. The dancers are judged on their outfits and accessories and how well they dance. Singers and drum groups must provide a proper song for each type of dance, and in some cases, use intricate rhythms to try to "trick" the dancers into missing the last beat of the song.

There will be informational demonstrations throughout the powwow weekend to explain the different dance and music styles for those who are new to powwow.

Admission to the Powwow is $6 for adults, $5 for children and senior citizens, and free for children under 5 and UI students with ID. A family pass admits four for $18 and a 10-person group ticket is $40. Three-day passes are also available at $15 for adults and $10 for children.

This year, in conjunction with the powwow, the UI American Indian and Native Studies Program will host the CIC American Indian Studies Consortium Annual Graduate Student Conference. The events of the conference will include an evening of storytelling featuring Native storytellers and discussion of storytelling as well as presentations by graduate students doing research on topic related to pan-hemispheric American Indian Studies.

Additional information is available on the Powwow Web site or by contacting UI professor Jacki Rand at or UI graduate student and event organizer Tracy Peterson at