FAIRBANKS - Alanna Gibson will represent Native Alaskans in one of the nation’s largest Native American gatherings.
Gibson, of North Pole, will take part in the Miss Indian World pageant in Albuquerque, N.M.
The 21-year-old Athabascan was named Miss World Eskimo-Indian Olympics in July at the festival in the Carlson Center.
Beginning today and ending Saturday, 27 Native American women will vie for the crown.
The pageant is a part of the 27th annual Gathering of Nations, which is billed as the world’s largest Native American powwow.
For today’s talent portion, Gibson will sing a traditional Athabascan song from Minto, where her family is from. She practiced the song with her grandmother, Geraldine Charlie.
One skill the contest judges is dancing ability. Though she is of Interior descent, Gibson studied the drum music and dances of Eskimo cultures so that she could fully represent Alaska Natives.
The winner will travel across the country and internationally as a representative for Native American culture.
Contestants also will be judged on tribal knowledge and personality. Updates are available at www.twitter.com/MissIndianWorld.
“The Miss Indian World title is one of the most prestigious honors in the Native American and indigenous world,” Gathering of Nations founder Derek Mathews stated in a press release. “The winner will bring together native and indigenous people throughout North America by providing a cultural link between tribes.”
Miss WEIO 2007, Nicole Colbert of Napakiak, won the Miss Indian World pageant in 2008.