Piscataqua Powwow
An intertribal celebration of Native American culture and heritage

Saturday, August 12 & Sunday, August 13, 2023, 10 AM-4 PM
Rain or shine

Black Thunder Singers, Host Drums
Walking Bear & Turning Eagle, Invited Drums
Ernie Proper, MC
Aaron Dana, Arena Director
Willow Green, Storytelling
Jesse Bruchac, Opening Remarks
Jill Cresey-Gross & Dan Shears, Head Dancers

About the Event:
This region has a deep history of seasonal gathering by Indigenous peoples. In 2023, while Portsmouth is celebrating its quadricentennial anniversary, the Museum is working to ensure that Abenaki history — before, throughout, and beyond the colonial period — is not sidelined or overshadowed by the history of Europeans’ arrivals in the region. Strawbery Banke partnered with Indigenous collaborators who have experience with powwow organizing and expectations.

A powwow is a modern Indigenous tradition of intertribal gathering and celebration. The Piscataqua Powwow at Strawbery Banke features 2-3 drum groups, dancers in regalia, a flute player, a storyteller, and an array of vendors demonstrating and selling their traditional arts and foods. At the center of the powwow is the dance circle or arena, surrounded by an outer ring of participants and vendors. The arena director oversees the daily events and informally educates the public attendees about some cultural practices occurring. 

People of all backgrounds are welcome. In the words of AAA Native Arts, “There are no spectators at a pow wow. Everyone is considered a participant, even if you don’t do anything but lend your presence. Everyone has a place in the circle of people.”

The Piscataqua Powwow has been made possible by The Roger R. and Theresa S. Thompson Endowment Fund

The Piscataqua Powwow is included with general museum admission. Tickets are available for purchase online and in-person at the Lawrence J. Yerdon Visitors Center, 14 Hancock Street, Portsmouth, and are valid for two consecutive days! General Museum admission rates are as follows:

  • Members: Free — Learn more!
  • Adult: $23.00
  • Senior (65+)/Student: $21.00
  • Child (ages 5 - 17): $10.00
  • Child (under 5): Free
  • Family (2 Adults & Children ages 17 and under): $56.00

Purchase Tickets

Tickets purchased online can be redeemed at any date during the 2023 season. 

For more information on booking vendor spots, please contact Alex Cave, Museum Events Manager via acave[at]

Performers, Singers, & Dancers:
Strawbery Banke has reserved several hotel blocks for powwow performers under the group name "Piscataqua Powwow" at local hotels for the nights of Friday, August 11, and Saturday, August 12. Please note: area hotels except for the Best Western Plus Portsmouth, area hotels require a two-night minimum for discounted blocks. These discounted rates expire by July 4, 2023, and rooms must be booked prior to or will be released.
  • Best Western Plus Portsmouth, Interstate Traffic Circle, 580 US-1, Portsmouth, NH
    Single or Double: $299.00 (no minimum stay)
    Click here to reserve. This discount is only available at this link.
  • Howard Johnson, 383 Woodbury Ave., Portsmouth, NH
    Double (2 Queens): $249.00
    Call 603.431.4400 and mention the Piscataqua Powwow to reserve.
  • Holiday Inn, 300 Woodbury Ave., Portsmouth, NH
    Single (1 King) or Double (2 Queens): $289.00
    Call 603.431.8000 and mention the Piscataqua Powwow to reserve.
  • The Inn at Hampton (Best Western), 815 Lafayette Road, Hampton, NH
    Single (1 King): $239.99 or Double (2 Queens): $249.99
    Call 603.929.2160 and mention the Piscataqua Powwow or click here to reserve. 
There is NO ON-SITE PARKING for the Piscataqua Powwow as it is reserved for those with handicap-accessible plates or hangtags only. Visitors are encouraged to try nearby off-site parking options including Portsmouth's two parking garages:  Hanover Street Parking Garage and Foundry Place Parking Garage. For more information, please visit Park Portsmouth's website