History Page for Pow Wow Festival Website
Pow Wow Then and Now
By Jimmy Vines, Historian, Seminole Historical Society
Barbecued chicken, beans, and coleslaw was the order of the day for the first Seminole Pow Wow! It was 1967 and Seminole High School had no lights in their stadium. They needed $8,000 to complete the lighting system. The Seminole Volunteer Firefighters and Seminole High School Boosters Club said, “Let’s barbecue chickens and raise money to take care of this situation.” Cat Mangum, wife of Holland Mangum, suggested it be named Pow Wow. Everyone agreed the barbecue and the name Pow Wow was a good idea for the fundraiser. It was also suggested to include a parade to go along with the fundraiser. The Pow Wow Festival and Parade was conceived—the year was 1967. There were 45 units in the first parade and $1,600 was raised from the barbecue.
In 1969, the highlight of the parade was Chief Joe Dan Osceola, Chief of the Seminole Tribe in Florida and a direct descendent of the famous Chief Osceola. Chief Joe Dan, Grand Marshal of the parade rode in a 1968 Lincoln Continental convertible (21 feet long). Chief Joe Dan’s gift to Holland Mangum, leader and future Mayor of Seminole, was a beautiful, colorful vest made by his tribe. The Chief also left a written memento giving his blessings to Seminole, which became a City in November of 1970--both of these items are displayed at the Seminole Historical Society located at the Holland G Mangum Recreation Complex.
In 1970, a small carnival with rides was added to the Pow Wow Festival. Now the Pow Wow Festival and Parade is scheduled on the second weekend in March each year with over where there are over 60 entries in the parade, live entertainment, various food vendors, partnerships with local civic organization and over 30 carnival rides with an attendance of over 15,000 visitors. At present activities include the Kiwanis Pancake Breakfast, Historical Society Mini Museum, and the Kiwanis Fire Truck Pull.
“Pow Wow Festival & Parade-Then & Now” Tampa Bay Newspapers, 2008.
Article by Holland Mangum: Seminole Courier, March 23, 1972.