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SAGINAW

GRANT

Interview and photos by Carol Sue Stoddard

At the age of 78, Saginaw Grant is a highly respected elder in and out of his Native American community. A powerful positive role model, he is adamant about keeping his culture alive and well. He is a Core Head Dancer and Motivational Speaker at Pow Wow gatherings and his talents have also given him a colorful career as an actor with his most recent film working with Johnny Depp in “The Lone Ranger”. Born in Pawnee Oklahoma and a tribal member of the ‘Sac and Fox Nation’, he presently lives in Southern California where Malibu has been his favorite gathering place for Pow Wow’s going on 16 years. WHAT IS A POW WOW EXACTLY AND WHAT IS IT’S PURPOSE? “A Pow Wow is a gathering of friends that come together and celebrate. We sing our songs, dance our dances, pray. We get to hear from all the other tribes. There is a Pow Wow almost every week-end somewhere in the country. We come together to renew our strength and fortify ourselves for the upcoming week so we can deal with present day life. When you hear a drum played at a Pow Wow, that drum is the heart beat of our people. We feel good when we hear that drum. All races of people have always used that to communicate with each other. The simple things mean a great deal to us.” TELL US WHY MALIBU HAS HONORED POW WOW EVENTS “My native people have always been in this area and in the Channel Islands. Malibu has really recognized our people by having this gathering, in it’s 16th year I believe. Malibu has taken a step forward in sponsoring this gathering each year. The Chumash, known for their canoes, made the journey from the Channel Islands to Malibu and up the coast for centuries. So Malibu is one place where they really know who we are and what our makeup is in life. I really enjoy myself when I come to the Malibu Pow Wows, especially because of the atmosphere, the ocean, the mountains..... .” WHAT ARE YOUR DREAMS AND YOUR GOALS? “Just living my life and showing people who we are....we are just like everyone else with two arms and legs, even though we do have different cultures. My goal in life is to teach people my way of living and how my ancestors lived. I listened and retained the stories of my elders and the different philosophies that brought our people where they are today. It is meant to be carried on to future generations, like a dual education of our elders and of todays way of life. I think I am successful in the way that I live because I really enjoy myself and doing things for other people. We are put here on Mother Earth to enjoy life..... ...the simple things mean a great deal to us”.

Profile for Malibu90265magazine

ISSUE 8 - BODY OF WORK  

Issue 8 Celebrate those who choose to leave us a legacy. Celebrated artist Alison Van Pelt graces the cover, C.O.O. of Land Rover Gerry Mc G...

ISSUE 8 - BODY OF WORK  

Issue 8 Celebrate those who choose to leave us a legacy. Celebrated artist Alison Van Pelt graces the cover, C.O.O. of Land Rover Gerry Mc G...