Phoenix Indian Center Celebrates 3rd Annual Two-Spirit Powwow
- By Darren Thompson
PHOENIX — This earlier weekend, the Phoenix Indian Centre hosted an annual powwow that welcomes and celebrates its lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and two-spirit (LGBTQ2S) relations in a motion that has been developing all through Indian Nation.
The 3rd Annual Two-Spirit Powwow celebrated with 60 registered dancers and 6 drums representing a variety of tribes from all around Indian State.
Prior to European colonization, several Indigenous communities acknowledged five genders: male, female, two-spirit males, two-spirit ladies, and transgendered. Two-spirit is a phrase usually and completely used by American Indian men and women and communities that determine a male or woman as obtaining two genders—male and feminine at the same time.
“In numerous distinct tribes, a lot of Two-Spirit local community associates are very critical and essential, and for the reason that we’re in an urban centre, we’re not necessarily around our ancestral homelands,” Phoenix Indian Center’s Chief Executive Officer Jolyana Begay-Kroupa told Native News Online. “In numerous situations, our teachings turn into dropped about time. This powwow is genuinely about organizing a way to come back together, aid and celebrate our brothers and sisters who are in the LGTBQ2S community.”
The Phoenix Indian Center has been arranging the powwow considering that 2021, when it was held pretty much and has remained committed to supporting the LGBTQ2S neighborhood at any time due to the fact. Started in 1947, the Phoenix Indian Middle is the oldest urban American Indian Centre in the United States.
Last weekend’s Two-Spirit Powwow was co-organized by Mesa Neighborhood School and the South Mountain Local community Higher education and drew the major crowd the celebration has noticed so much. The powwow bundled more than two dozen art suppliers, food stuff sellers, and booths for men and women to indicator up for facts from the Phoenix Indian Centre, Native Overall health, or how to become allies for the LGBTQ2s local community.
“This was a great turnout these days, loads of smiling faces,” Begay-Kroupa claimed of the powwow.
Monique “Muffie” Mousseau drove down from Swift City, S.D., to go to the powwow to aid the two her partner, Felipa De Leon, as a single of the head dancers and the Phoenix Indian Centre.
“They supported us when Felipa and I had been possessing a challenging time,” Mousseau reported in an job interview with Native News On-line.
Mousseau and De Leon were being married with seven other partners at the National Gay Relationship Celebration in 2015 at the Mount Rushmore Nationwide Monument in the Black Hills of South Dakota. When the couple found same-sex remained illegal on the Pine Ridge Reservation where they grew up, they petitioned for a alter in the reservations legislation — which they obtained in 2019 when the Oglala Sioux Tribal Council handed a exact same-sex marriage ordinance in a 12–3 vote.
Mousseau and De Leon went on to get started Uniting Resilience, an firm that advocates for other Indigenous communities to build regulations of protection and legal rights for relationship equality.
They aid manage an annual two-spirit powwow in Sioux Falls.
Tony Duncan, award-successful hoop dancer and Indigenous American flute participant, attended the occasion with his spouse and children to support his brother, who was a single of the head dancers of the powwow.
“We came as a family to assist my brother, Kyle,” Tony Duncan told Indigenous News On-line. “It’s wonderful to see anyone in this article.”
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