KAPAA — Squeals of joy rose from the Lydgate Park as more than 400 students joined Head Man Dancer Eric Manuelito and Head Woman Dancer Abriel Johnny-Rodriguez in the Snake Dance.
The Snake Dance brought to a close the school outreach for the 15th Annual Kauai Powwow at the Main and smaller pavilions at Lydgate Park.
Dr. Kani Blackwell of the Kauai Powwow Council said this year, the response to the school outreach was tremendous, necessitating the Native Americans to stay an extra day to accomodate St. Theresa School and the Kekaha Elementary School.
Sage Martin-Oldfield, a student at Island School, donned regalia and took Dr. B, as Blackwell prefers to be called, as a partner and joined in the Two-Step, an inter-tribal affair featuring the men and women performers.
Gates to the free Kauai Powwow open at 10 a.m. on both Saturday and Sunday at the Kapaa Beach Park. The Grand Entry takes place at 11 a.m. each day and activities continue until 7 p.m., Saturday and 5 p.m., Sunday.
Saturday’s events will feature the gifting exchange between Kauai Mayor Bernard Carvalho Jr. and the Chief, now called Chairman, Clifford LaChappa of the Barona Band of Mission Indians.
Kauai’s cultural exchange will feature the Joyful Noise taiko emsemble with Aki Conquest and Dumas on Saturday along with Tamatea Nui O Kauai, a Polynesian dance halau, to tie in with the theme of “Rejuvenate Your Spirit: Embracing Our Culture and Tradition.”
Patrons can also shop and browse through the offering of crafts and food.
Visit www.kauaipowwow.com for more information.
• Dennis Fujimoto, staff writer and photographer, can be reached at 245-0453 or dfujimoto@ thegardenisland.com.