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Arlee hosts annual powwow for 4th of July weekend

The annual powwow in Arlee has been celebrated since the early 1900’s.
Dancers lined up at the Arlee PowWow, Arlee Mt.
Posted at 6:54 PM, Jul 01, 2023
and last updated 2023-07-03 11:40:17-04

ARLEE - The annual Powwow in Arlee has been celebrated since the early 1900s and has been a significant cultural event for this small Montana town.

“This is just a little community we have here and we have this kind of a gathering here is really something for our people to have visitors like this from all over the country," explained Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribal Council member James Matt.

Over 500 dancers showed up to the powwow along with many more spectators and vendors at the event. The event was highlighted by competitions for dancers, singers and drummers of all ages with cash prizes for the top finishers.

To be a part of the event was important to Destiny Finley who recently started dancing, "It means a lot actually and Elders think it's like really good and we’re keeping the traditions alive.”

James Matt at the Arlee Powwow
James Matt at the Arlee Powwow

The sheer number of people brought many different tribes and cultures together in celebration.

Matt told MTN News that seeing such a large group of people gather in one place and share their culture meant the world to him.

“It does something to your heart, it really does. And it really was emotional, for me anyway. You know to see, to be able to participate with all the dancers and people that were involved in this.”

The powwow continues through Tuesday, July 4.

Visit to view a full list of events.