2019 Expo parade a string of ‘stories that connect to the soul’
As the sun beat down on Anadarko Wednesday morning, Ricky Gooday, Sr., watched with pride as multiple generations of his decedents danced to drumbeats in the streets, black-and-white patterns painted boldly on their chests, hoods covering focused faces.
“My grandfather was a dancer,” said Gooday, whose grandsons and sons now carry on the tradition of the Fort Sill Apache Mountain Spirit Dancers at expos, fairs and powwows across the state.
Gooday’s son, Ricky Gooday, Jr., danced in the 84th annual American Indian Expo parade through downtown Anadarko. The expo showcases the arts, crafts and traditions of 13 American Indian tribes: Apache, Arapaho, Caddo, Cheyenne, Comanche, Delaware, Ft. Sill Apache, Iowa, Kiowa, Osage, Otoe, Ponca, and Wichita.
“We’re a crowd favorite every year,” said the younger Gooday, adding he considers it an honor to get to dance in the expo parade.
“I started parading when I was 12, and I’m 32, so it’s been 20 years,” he said.
Gooday, Jr., is teaching his 9-year-old son to perform as a Mountain Spirit Dancer.