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Gathering of Nations, Miss Indian World Pageant canceled

Cheyenne Kippenberger’s reign extended

Organizers of the Gathering of Nations Powwow held each year in Albuquerque, New Mexico, have canceled the event due to the ongoing COVID-19 public health emergency.

The event was set to take place April 23-25. The large gathering of spectators and thousands of dancers from hundreds of Tribal Nations coincides with the Miss Indian World Pageant and ancillary events such as Stage 49, the Traders’ Market and the Horse & Rider Parade.

“Due to the cancelation of the Gathering of Nations activities, the Miss Indian World Pageant is also canceled,” organizers said in a statement on March 17. “The current reigning Miss Indian World, Cheyenne Kippenberger, will remain the title holder until April 24, 2021.”

Kippenberger earned the title April 27, 2019 – the first-ever Seminole to be crowned Miss Indian World.

The 24-year-old is from the Hollywood Reservation. She is the daughter of Joe and Susan Kippenberger.

“I feel it is my obligation to Indian Country to continue serving as an ambassador for our people during these uncertain times and I will continue to serve and represent our people to the best of my abilities,” Kippenberger said in a statement on the Miss Indian World Pageant Instagram page. 

Organizers did say the Miss Indian World Pageant raffle drawing would still take place at a date to be determined before April 22, 2020.

“While this was not an easy decision, the Gathering of Nations continues to pray for the health and well-being of individuals infected with COVID-19 and encourages everyone to take precautions and the necessary preventative steps to help stop the spread of coronavirus and other communicable diseases in our respective communities,” the statement read.

The Gathering of Nations, a nonprofit organization, said that passes, tickets, vendor fees and other purchases were not refundable, but that credit vouchers would be issued and would be redeemable within the next two events through April 2022.

“We understand that this sudden cancelation is a tremendous inconvenience and recognize the difficult situation all of us are now facing,” organizers said.

The dates for the next Gathering of Nations Powwow is set for April 22-24, 2021.

More is at gatheringofnations.com.

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Damon Scott
Damon is a multimedia journalist for the Seminole Tribune. He has previously been an editor and reporter for digital and print media in Florida and his home state of New Mexico. Send him an email at damonscott@semtribe.com.
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