Orangevale Pow Wow Days celebrates 50 years

By: Margaret Snider, Folsom Lake Entertainer
-A +A

Who: Orangevale Chamber of Commerce
What: Orangevale Pow Wow Days 50th anniversary
When: May 16-19, Thursday 3-10 p.m.; Friday 311 p.m.; Saturday 11 a.m. – 11 p.m.,  parade 9 a.m.; Sunday 12-6 p.m.
Where: Orangevale Community Park, 7301 Filbert Ave., Orangevale
Gate fee: Free admission.
Parking: cars $5; large trucks, vans and SUVs $8
Information: or (916) 988-0175.

ORANGEVALE, CA - Orangevale’s biggest event, Pow Wow Days, is bigger than ever this year as it celebrates its 50th anniversary.

The event will sport a full carnival, with wristbands for $20, lots of entertainment. There will be more than 60 vendors, including arts and crafts and food booths.

“The last few years we’ve really upped the entertainment,” said Darlene Lyons, president of EZ Events, Inc. and publicity coordinator for Pow Wow Days. “There’s so much to do.”

Besides the carnival, kids can go on Bubble Lagoon: they crawl into a transparent bubble and can run, crawl, or roll in the bubble as they move around the pond.

Though it opens at 3 p.m. on Thursday, the opening ceremony will officially kick off the weekend at 6:30 p.m. that evening. Special guests and special presentations are part of the ceremonies, and the candidates for Orangevale Honorary Mayor will be acknowledged. The 2013 Pow Wow Days Queen, chosen on April 26, will reign over the whole event.

Val Starr and the Blues Rocket will initiate Thursday evening’s jazz and blues theme, and Friday’s theme will be classic rock.

“We have over 30 live bands that will be playing on the two stages over the four days, all live entertainment,” said Lyons.

Saturday begins at 9 a.m. with the parade on Greenback that starts at Main and ends at Filbert. Many floats will be throwing candy to the kids.

“Everything from baseball teams to the stagecoach from Wells Fargo marches their way down Greenback,” said Lisa Montes, chairperson for Pow Wow Days. Montes has previously been honorary mayor of Orangevale, and now is on the Board of Directors for Orangevale Recreation and Park District.

For Saturday’s country music theme, local artist Dave Russell, named on the Country Music Association’s list of “Who New to Watch in 2013,” will open, and sponsor 101.9 The Wolf is bringing in Nashville country music star Steve Holy of Love Don’t Run fame as well as other hit singles.

Sunday’s family day has been enhanced this year with a Pee Wee Rodeo. Events for the 2-7 age range will be stick horse racing, mutton busting, goat ribbon tying, boot run and dummy roping. Afterward, Orangevale horse team Painted Ladies will present their drill routine.

Special sponsor Lake Appliance Repair, owned by Scott and Krystle McConnell, serves a large area, but their store is based in Orangevale near Hazel and Greenback.

Krystle said she is looking forward to seeing customers in person at Pow Wow Days; she books calls, but the technicians are usually the ones who get to see the clients.

“The other reason why we did it is because our sponsorship is going to help a few of the local charities,” Krystle said. “The Orangevale Food Bank in particular is one that we’re really supporting. It’s going to a good cause.”

Montes pointed out that there are at least 22 nonprofit groups that benefit from the event.

“It benefits everything from our athletic programs at our high schools, to our music and art programs at elementary level, to all of our service groups,” she said.

The community involvement and the funds raised for community nonprofits is one of the things that has helped carry on the tradition for so long, Montes said.

“What’s made it so popular is that it’s just a fun family event and it’s free,” Lyons said. “It’s a really fun thing and it’s in a beautiful park, easy to get to.”

For more information about the Pow Wow Days, visit or call (916) 988-0175.