Our History

Lawilowan American Indian Festival, Inc.

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Lawilowan American Indian Festival, Inc. is a 501c3 Corporation, formed in 2007, by Noni Many Hawks Nickerson and Arvil Meisenhelter. When Don Hockenberry retired from organizing the Red Creek Mid-Winter Festival, he graciously allowed us to continue the long running event that he and his Boy Scout Troop 71  organized and produced for 16 years. The festival  started in a church hall but quickly outgrew that and moved to Gettysburg College.  Eventually  the Pow Wow moved to Dickinson College in Carlisle, PA to fill the Kline Athletic Center. Under a new name, the first Lawilowan American Indian Festival was held in March 2007 at the Carlisle Expo Center. People liked the new  venue, and the spirit of the event.   When the Pow Wow returned in March of 2009, the dance arbor was filled with  over 300 dancers, three  circles deep. Don had always put on the Red Creek festival as a gift to the Indian people, a time to shake off the cold and inactivity of winter, get your regalia on, and move to the beat of the drum, the heartbeat of the Earth Mother. It was also a great way for drums to get air time before the main pow-wow season began. We promised to continue this event in the same spirit and love for the People that Don has always brought to the dance. Hopefully we have succeeded in doing just that. We have been honored to host each and every one of them.   We hope the Lawilowan”family” continues to grow each year.  Be sure to join us and help the tradition live on.