AM Buffalo


Friday at the Erie County Fair - Nya:Weh Indian Village

Posted at 5:18 PM, Aug 20, 2021

Blaine Tallchief, MC Indian Village shows explains the Smoke dance. It is a competition style dance. He says it’s not just the competition between the dancers themselves but between the dancers and the singers. The singers might have trick songs. There may be stomp stop in the song where the dancers have to stomp too. He explains the importance of the turtle mound and says the turtle is very significant in their culture.

Mel is at the Nya:Weh Indian Village where there are eight trading posts. They represent the eight different clans. Blaine says they have these clans that are pretty much a family within a family. There is the bear, the turtle, the hawk, the snake, the heron, the wolf, the deer and the beaver, and whatever your mother’s clan is that is what you are.

Blaine explains the meaning of their flag. The squares in the flag represent nations within their Confederacy. The first square is the Seneca Nation, the second one is the Cayuga Nation, the sign in the middle is their Central Fire, that’s the Onondaga Nation, the next square is the Oneida Nation followed by the Mohawk Nation. The lines in between the squares show the nations are connected. Blaine says the lines on the end represents that any nation that wants to become part of their confederacy can do so but they have to follow our confederacy guidelines. They have to govern themselves to their language and culture.

For more information about the Erie County Fair visit