Lani Hansen/Senior Reporter
ALBUQUERQUE, New Mexico– The Gathering of Nations Powwow is coming up and with that in mind so is the Miss Indian World Pageant. The pageant is seeking contestants to represent the Gathering of Nations (GON) and all Indigenous population.
According to the GON website, the Miss Indian World Pageant is the largest and most prestigious cultural title for young Native/Indigenous women. Miss Indian World is a Cultural Goodwill Ambassador to all cultures presenting and representing Native American, Indigenous and First Nations tribal culture.
Miss Indian World first originated in 1983 in Albuquerque, NM. She is selected by acquiring points in a variety of categories and must be knowledgeable about the tribe(s) and traditions she will be representing.
Even though this is a five-day competition, the contestants will experience a journey of sisterhood as they represent their tribes and communities, form lifelong friendships and memories, participate in a full stage production of the Miss Indian World traditional talent presentations, and take place in the crowning of the new ambassador in front of an audience. She will hold the reign for one year.
To qualify for the competition, contestants must be natural born female Indigenous woman ages 18-25 (cannot be older than 25 at the time of the crowning), must verify tribal affiliation, single/never married, no dependents (as the Miss Indian World travels and represents all Native Americans) and must have knowledge of tribal traditions.
The categories for the Miss Indian World competition are a traditional talent presentation representing your tribe, public speaking, personal interview, a dance demonstration through Powwow music and raffle ticket sales. The point system runs off each of the categories listed, the application noted the raffle points are used only for tie-breakers.
The outgoing Miss Indian World for 2019-2021 is Cheyenne Kippenberger. She is from the Seminole Tribe of Florida. During her reign she focused on her platform which was to overturn adverse stereotypes and stigmatizations of mental health in tribal communities and encourage healing through identity and self-love.
Miss Indian World 2022-2023 will be crowned on April 30, 2022 at the Gathering of Nations Powwow. All contestants must complete and submit their applications by the deadline of March 20, 2022 to prepare for all qualifications.
More information and applications can be found at: https://www.gatheringofnations.com/miss-indian-world/