William S. Middleton Memorial Veterans Hospital
Native American Heritage Month Celebration
The Madison VA Hospital was proud to host the Ho-Chunk Nation for a Pow Wow on November 18th 2010, to celebrate Native American Heritage Month. Mr. Robert Mann, a Tribal Veterans Service Officer, explained to the audience that a Pow Wow is a social time, where friends and family get together to sing, dance, and give thanks.
The program began with a Grand Entry, and then a flag song, where the American and Ho-Chunk flags were raised. Accompanying Mr. Mann were five dancers dressed in beautiful Native American costumes, covered with beading and feathers. There was also a Drum Circle, where men played a large drum and sang.
Mr. Mann and the dancers and singers performed songs and dances for each branch of the Military. Veterans who served in each branch were encouraged to participate, and many did. They then performed the Friendship Dance, where all audience members were invited to dance along with the group. The program ended with the retiring of the colors, and a brief question session.
The Madison VA Hospital is grateful to the Ho-Chunk Nation for teaching us more about their culture, and sharing their song and dance with us. We hope to invite them back soon.
Happy Native American Heritage Month!