Deviney Luchsinger/ Multimedia Specialist
MCN royalty teach culture at 2017 Etvlwv Festival
WASHINGTON D.C. — At the 2017 Etvlwv Festival, Miss Muscogee (Creek) Nation Amberly Proctor, and Junior Miss MCN Iesha Phillips seized the opportunity to educate attendees about Mvskoke culture, this included local school children.
Proctor said, “Sometimes when you are in Oklahoma, you forget that people outside of the state do not know about the Muscogee (Creek) people or the culture.”
She was excited to use the festival as an opportunity to reach out to the people of Washington, D.C.
“Nobody [in Washington D.C.] knows who we are. Nobody knows about our tribe, so it’s so awesome to meet these new people and let them know who we are as Mvskoke people and that’s exactly what this is all about,” Proctor said.
Phillips said she enjoys sharing her culture and explaining the process of how she became princess.
“…And to show them that us Native Americans are still here. That we’re still surviving and striving for excellence,” Phillips said.
The princesses spoke with a few fourth grade students from Highland Park Christian Academy in Landover, Maryland, who had little exposure to Native American culture.
Amber Terrell, their teacher, said her students are learning about American culture, the people and social studies of the region, so she brought her class here to introduce them to the different heritages of the Native American people.
“They need to know exactly the different backgrounds that are here that make up the United States,” Terrell said.
She expressed the importance of children learning about unfamiliar cultures, and said understanding the differences in the people around them is how they can achieve a more cohesive community.
She said most of her students were eager to learn about powwows and other cultural dances.
Savannah, a student from Highland Park Christian Academy said she liked learning about the Native American battles.
Leyla, another HPCA student, said she enjoyed meeting the princesses and learning about their pageant experience.
The Etvlwv Festival was held Nov. 16-18 at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, D.C.