By Joe Martone
For many of you, your first major post-Thanksgiving event is going to be braving the untamed wild of Black Friday, engaging in a consumerist fight to the death that would put The Hunger Games to shame. Alternatively, you can get some culture and go back to nature for a fun three-day weekend where you can make the trek to Indio and behold the tradition of the Indio Powwow. Now in its 31st year, the annual Indio Powwow is a time to watch the Cabazon Band of Mission Indians display their full colors while embracing the ceremony of their ancestors. Join in an all-ages dance competition, get into a drum contest, try authentic Native American dishes, shop for various hand-made arts and crafts and see if you’re any good at bird singing! All of this contributes both to the learning and growth of knowledge about the original owners of Indio territory as well as a reminder of heritage to those who stem from the descendants of the Cahuilla people. It will be unlike anything else you do this year, unless you happen to be part of the Cabazon Band (in which case active Cabazon members get to experience much more often). This event is much more enticing than fighting some soccer mom over the new Furby toys as a middle-aged crowd cheers you on. If that’s your thing, we won’t judge. But you should probably seek therapy or go to the Powwow instead. You can shop later.
Fantasy Springs Resort, 84-245 Indio Springs Dr., Indio, (760) 345-2450; www.fantasyspringsresort.com/prod/cbmi/index.html. Free.