There is a young teenager that occasionally lurks around my afterschool program, Rez Stop, on the Colville Confederated Reservation. The sounds of Powwow drumming floats through the air from her phone before her smiling face ever appears.
Not long ago she asked me to help her make a video of her dancing. Excitement bounced through my veins as I have been watching this young lady dance and roam the halls of the high school for a few years now. I agreed without a single consideration. “So in return,” I grinned trying not to act giddy, “I would like you to be a guest on my blog.” Her face bloomed into a brilliant grin, then confusion slide over as if she was more than likely asking herself “What the heck is a blog?”, and then that beautiful smile erupted and she replied, “Sure!”
This is another reason I want to introduce you to Miss Hannah Blackcrow. She is a young person with manners that so many young people have tossed aside these days, works hard in school, and has the most amazing positive outlook in life. So let’s hear from this gal who dances to her own jingle.
My name is Hannah Blackcrow. My dad is Dave Madera and my mom is Markalene Blackcrow. I’m fifteen-years-old and I’m a Blackfeet Native American. I started dancing when I was one-year-old. I dance Jingle Dress. My mom makes all of my dresses and my dad’s regalia. She also does my beadwork.
My whole family dances: five brothers, me and my parents. During the spring we start traveling to places like the Gathering of Nations in Albuquerque, New Mexico and the Denver March Powwow. This begins our season until school is dismissed and summer turns the corner, then we head out.
I love dancing so much that whenever I’m sad or down and in need of getting junk out of my head, I just go out and dance. I dance for people who can’t walk, talk or see things. I especially dance for my family and friends.
My Blackfeet tribe has a tradition about our hair. The more it grows the more power you have. That’s why my hair is so long (past her bottom!).
My favorite activities are powwowing, basketball and hanging out with my friends.
I have also been Powwow Royalty, which has helped me talk with others in person and in front of a crowd. My confidence has soared. Here are the titles I have occurred:
Little Miss Spokane when I was six-years-old.
Miss Pushgousesaw (People of the Water) when I was nine-years-old.
Miss Arrow Lakes princess when I was thirteen-years-old.
It is really fun to be a princess for one year and represent my title. My goal is to be Miss Denver March and Miss Manito Anbee and finally Miss Indian World. I have met and befriended so many people, as well as other princesses. So until next season, I will continue to dance to the jingle in the halls of the school and at home.
Just a couple of notes: Hannah shared a traditional Native American greeting which always includes her name and her family’s names. She also shared with me the difference between the Blackfeet and Blackfoot people. Blackfeet is the correct term for those Native American from America (Montana) and the Blackfoot people are from Canada.
Hannah Blackcrow Dancing