Reno-Sparks Indian Colony dancers to perform for National Guard

Royalty at the 2014 Numaga Indian Days Pow Wow. Photo by Reno-Sparks Indian Colony

Members of the Reno-Sparks Indian Colony will help the Nevada National Guard celebrate diversity on Friday.

Chairman Arlan Melendez said the tribe's participation in the annual Diversity Day highlights his people's long military tradition. Three members are on active duty, along with 55 living veterans and 83 who have passed. Two elders, SSG Beatrice Thayer and SGT/MSG Landrum Queton, are retired from the Air National Guard.

“Our warriors have always fought for Mother Earth even before the United States became a country,” Melendez said.

The tribe's powwow club took part in the Diversity Day last year. The group consists of about 30 dancers, ranging in ages from 2 years old to 65 years old, who practice traditional, fancy dance, jingle dress and other styles.

YouTube: 2015 Numaga Pow Wow

The event will be held at the Nevada Air National Guard Base in Reno.

“It’s about educating other people about different cultures,” Alicia Nyland, the Nevada National Guard’s equal employment manager, said. “It’s about learning other cultures through music, dance, costumes and food — things to touch, look at, taste and see. It’s an experience for the senses.”

To close out the summer season, the Reno-Sparks Indian Colony hosts the annual Numaga Pow Wow. This year's event takes place September 2-4 in Hungry Valley.