Brelynn Anderson Sho-Ban Festival

Brelynn Anderson, 13, competes for the title of Festival Princess at the Shoshone-Bannock Festival in Fort Hall in 2018.

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Fort Hall — The Shoshone-Bannock Tribes officially announced on Tuesday the cancellation of the 57th Annual Shoshone-Bannock Indian Festival in August due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Tribes annual event is the largest outdoor festival and pow-wow in the state of Idaho.

According to Festival Coordinator, Wendy Farmer, “Our annual festival brings in visitors from all over Indian Country throughout the United States, Canada and visitors throughout the world. It is the largest competition powwow and cultural sharing event sponsored by the Shoshone-Bannock Tribes. The annual celebration gives many families the opportunity to visit and camp throughout the four-day event.”

The Fort Hall Business Council officially support the festival cancellation due to safe guarding the community from the growing concerns of the COVID pandemic.

The annual Festival also includes festivities such as the powwow, Arts & Craft Vendors, Art show, Indian Relay races, Rodeo, Traditional buffalo & salmon feast, Royalty contest, Softball, Hand Game, Golf, Parade and Skate Jam. The appointed powwow head staff have been invited to 2021 Festival and agreed to retain their titles with the Festival Committee.

Regardless of cancellation, current Miss Shoshone-Bannock Stormie Perdash and Festival Royalty, except for the Tzi-Tzi and Little Princess, will retain their current titles until next August 2021. Tzi Tzi and Little Princess please contact Ms. Alex Alvarez at 208-760-0270 to confirm those titles.

Also, The Indian National Finals Tour Rodeo and Junior/Senior rodeo are also cancelled. The Fort Hall Rodeo committee would like to thank the Contract personnel, stock contractor and sponsors for their consideration and support. Also, the sanctioning region, the Western States Indian Rodeo Association, and sponsors that support the rodeo in hopes for a bigger Tour rodeo in 2021.

The Arts & Craft and Food Vendors will be given a full refund to those that paid early. Refunds will be mailed to the person’s name on the applications. If you have any questions, please contact Tribal Finance, Tiffany Pabawena at (208) 478-3779 or email tipabawena@sbribes.com or Crystal Ramos at (208) 478-3842 or cramos@sbtribes.com

The Parade committee have plans for bigger parades by highlighting the men’s war bonnet on horse, women’s buckskin dresses on horse, and youth Indian relay teams, women walkers with traditional cradle board and baby, men walkers with reservation style hats and many more traditional categories with more prize money!

The Art Show and outdoor events and sporting competitions, such as the hand game, softball, golf, horseshoe and skateboarding look forward to bigger activities as well.

Farmer states, “The Fort Hall Indian Relay association operates independently. Please contact the association for information and updates on their race schedule.” In addition, Wiley Petersen Bull Riding Mayhem also announced the cancellation of this year’s event.

Despite the cancellation of this year’s Festival, the Tribes have approved several facility upgrade projects to the Festival and Rodeo grounds that include a new restroom/showers facility near the hand game area, replacing the handgame arbor, re-leveling of the dance arena, and replacement of the horse track outside rail of the rodeo grounds.

Farmer states, “The Shoshone-Bannock Indian Festival involves several teams of committees to make the annual event a success. We would like to thank all the committees that volunteer their time. Please stay healthy and we hope to see you all next year, on August 12-15, 2021”

Additional information on the Festival, follow them on social media:

Festival Website at www.shobanfestival.com, the Festival Facebook page, Shoshone-Bannock Indian Festival and Festival Instagram page, shobanfestival for ongoing updates.