About Drums Along the Hudson®
A Native American Festival
In September 2002, with a generous grant from the NYC Department of Cultural
Affairs, Kamala Cesar, Artistic Director of Lotus Music and Dance, and Carl Nelson, Producer, created Drums Along the Hudson®:
A Native American Festival. It began as a traditional Pow Wow to celebrate
Native American heritage and culture, and also to commemorate the Lenape people
who first inhabited Inwood Hill Park, or Shorakapok ("edge of the water").
This event first took place annually in the spring, thereafter we added something
new and different each year to make the event more exciting and enjoyable
-- including a Shad tasting, a White Pine tree planting (the Iroquois symbol
of peace), international foods, drummers and dancers and a Native American
Arts in Education Initiative. The event has attracted attendees from 400 in the first
year to over 8,000 in recent years.
In 2009, we established an Environmental Tent where attendees can learn more
about practical ways to implement "green" living. Participating
organizations have included the Audubon Society, Clean Air NY, Lower East
Side Ecology Center, Hudsonia, the Council on the Environment of NYC and the
Captain Planet Foundation with appearances by Captain Planet. This year we
will have a free bicycle valet where attendees who ride their bikes
to the park can have a valet park their bikes for them.
About Lotus Music & Dance
Multi-Cultural Arts Center located in Chelsea NYC
Lotus Music & Dance was founded in 1989 by master Bharata
Natyam dancer Kamala Cesar. It is a performance space, sanctuary, and center
of education for traditional and indigenous performing arts forms. The mission
is to protect, promote, and celebrate the music and dance traditions of all
world cultures. Lotus Music & Dance remains the only
institution of its kind in New York City where master artists from India,
China, Korea, Burma, the South Pacific, Middle East, the Mohawk Nation, West Africa,
and Spain collectively call home.
Aside from our varied schedule of unique, multi cultural performances, we
offer instruction in traditional ethnic forms of dance and music
as well as Arts-In-Education programs to schools throughout the tri-state
area. Lotus Music & Dance also presents Drums
Along the Hudson: A Native American Festival, which features
Manhattan's only open air pow wow now.
For more information on Lotus Music & Dance, please visit