FARGO — The fourth annual Fargo-Moorhead Crossroads Powwow will take place this weekend, Oct. 5-6, as the organizers hope to bring together Natives and non-Natives alike at Scheels Arena.
"We want to share in a beautiful thing that is older than North Dakota itself," said Guy Fox, an organizer for the event and a member of the Mandan Hidatsa Arikara Nation.
The powwow is open to all spectators and dancers, though the nonprofit Crossroads invited a dozen of the best drum circles in the nation to participate, said Fox, who is also a member of the Fargo Native American Commission.
He added that he hopes the event will "destigmatize" Native culture for first-timers and give urban Indigenous people a place to learn and practice their traditions.
Erik Gooding, who also helped organize this year's event, said, "For the powwow dancers and singers, it’s a chance for them to do what they love to do in their hometown. For the people that just enjoy the powwow, it’s a wonderful opportunity right here to experience it. For those people interested in learning about different cultures, it’s a great example for them to come experience."
Grand entries — the opening ceremony in which tribes carry out the American flag and their nations' flags followed by Indigenous dancing and singing — will take place at noon and 7 p.m. on Saturday and at noon on Sunday.
Beyond the main dancing floor, the concourse area of the arena will have kids activities, booths for nonprofit groups, and vendors selling Indigenous foods such as Indian tacos.
Also, at 5 p.m. Saturday, Crossroads is hosting a free youth football combine for boys and girls, with former North Dakota State University football players Kyle Emanuel, Chase Morlock and Cole Jirik.
In all, Fox said he hopes the event will build "connection" in the community.
"Our powwow is focused on connecting with our friends and family, connecting with our community and inviting people to make new connections," Fox said.