Native Profile – 2011 Miss Indian World – Marjorie Tahbone
Marjorie Linne Tungwenuk Tahbone
Marge (like the Simpsons)
Inupiaq and Kiowa
What style do you dance?
Where are you originally from?
Where are you currently living?
What is your upcoming pow wow schedule?
As of right now i will be going to Long Island, New York for the Shennecock Powwow and the Navajo Fair in Window Rock, Arizona in September. then the FSIN powwow in Saskatoon and the Manito Ahbee powwow in Winnipeg. and of course there are other festivals i will go to in Alaska such as the world Eskimo Indian Olympics in July and the Kotzebue Trade Fair.
What is your favorite pow wow?
Its hard to say which powwow is my favorite because i have not been exposed to many of them. I’m sure all the powwows will be amazing and i will always take something valuable that i learned from each one of them.
Who are your favorite drums?
Its the same as the previous question, since i have not been exposed to the sound of powwow drumming as much i have not favorite style…yet. But of course i love the style of my homeland drum, its the style i am most used to, the Inupiaq drum.
Who have been your role models?
Of course my parents and family members have always been a huge influence in my life, my mother is my backbone and guides in my the right direction and my father is always showing me the beauty in life . Not only them but the elders within the state of Alaska, I have done so much traveling in my state that i have met so many wise people and they have always been a positive role model for me.
Who makes your outfits?
Our outfits our made by all members of the community who has the skill and time. there is alot of sewing involved and bead work, of course you all know how long that takes. My traditional parka took months to sew together, but in the end it is all worth it, pricked fingers and all.
Will gas prices affect your travel schedule?
Yes! the cost of fuel is extremely high in Alaska which is also why it is so expensive to fly everywhere. i think we are all affected with the high fuel prices but more in Alaska, in some of the villages gas could be from 5-12 dollars a gallon! But what can you do, we just adapt and deal with it.
What is your favorite music?
Well it varies of time to time. I do admit i am not really into the new music coming out (pop music) but if it has a good beat then its alright. But I’m more into the oldies, and jazz. some artist are Jack Johnson, Billie Holiday, Louis Armstrong, Beatles, even Elvis!
What other domestic skills do you have?
I took a documentary film making class this last semester and it has become a hobby of mine to document native lifestyles and themes to preserve my Inuit culture. I did a film on native dancing and it was a joy to do.
What do when not powwowing or being MIW?
Well I go to school full time at the University of Alaska Fairbanks studying Alaska native studies, Inupiaq language, and biology. I am a senior this year and hope to graduate this spring, but it might be pushed back another semester because of this Miss Indian World title but that does not bother me. Other than that I am a member and President of our UAF traditional dance group called the Inu-Yupiaq dance group so I spend a lot of time with them and am a member of AISE (American Indian Science and Engineering Society) and ANSEP (Alaska Native Science and Engineering Program) so I stay busy which is how I like it.
What is your favorite food?
Native food of course! I love our native foods, We call it Nikapiaq (real food). My favorite of those is seal meat, with fresh willow leaves soaked in seal oil and pilot bread. We also eat walrus, moose, fish, whale, and a variety of berries and greens (plants).
What advice to you have for young people?
Always stay positive, it seems that there is too much negativity surrounding us in today’s society whether it be in the news, in the schools, and in our communities. But being positive has helped me to keep pushing for the best, and being positive helps other people to be positive and effect them in a way you may not expect.
What is your most memorable pow wow moment?
Well as of now i have not been to any powwows as Miss Indian World, but from the ones i have been to it was always the sound of the drum that made my skin shiver with excitement.
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