Chickasaw Nation stomp dance troupe
members, from left, Buddy Parchcorn, Cotie Poe and Jesse Lindsey
sing and stomp dance at a recent demonstration. Everyone is welcome
to join dancers Sept. 29 at Kullihoma to kick off the 57th
Chickasaw Annual Meeting and 29th Festival.
Published September 23, 2017
ADA, OKLAHOMA The Chickasaw Nation will host a
community stomp dance Sept. 29 at Kullihoma to kick off the 57th
Chickasaw Annual Meeting and 29th Festival. The celebration begins
at 7 p.m.
Festivities will continue throughout the week at various
locations throughout the Chickasaw Nation culminating with Gov.
Bill Anoatubbys annual State of the Nation address. It will be held
9 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 7, at Fletcher Auditorium on the Murray State
Visitors may also enjoy a social stickball game at Kullihoma
Sept. 29. Stickball has been played by Native Americans for
centuries and is the forerunner of lacrosse.
Stomp dances are open to the public and include traditional song
and dance, food and fellowship amid the natural and historic beauty
Stomp dancing has deep roots in the Chickasaw culture.
LaDonna Brown, director of research and cultural interpretation
for the Chickasaw Nation, explained dances were often connected
with spiritual, ritual, ceremonial or social events, such as a
spring harvest celebration or fall festival.
There are still different dances for various occasions. The
Chickasaws remember dances for their spiritual nature, yet they
have become predominantly social in modern times. No matter the
type of dancing, it is always an opportunity to come together as a
community and guest participation is welcome and encouraged.
Men sing stomp dance songs in a call-and-answer format,
following a male song leader, who often sets the dance rhythm using
a handheld turtle shell shaker.
Women enhance the rhythms with shakers worn on their legs. These
shakers are often made of turtle shells or deer hooves. As
traditional box turtles are endangered, women fill milk cans with
river stone to mimic the rhythms produced by authentic turtle shell
Social dances often have animal-themed names, like the snake
dance and the raccoon dance. Each social dance has a fun and unique
On Saturday, Sept. 30, visitors are....