Southeastern Tribes Cultural Arts Celebration

Published 12:00 am Thursday, September 18, 2008

On Sept. 19-20, the third annual Southeastern Tribes Cultural Arts celebration will bring together master dancers, craftsmen, artists and athletes from the main southeastern tribes: Cherokee, Creek, Chickasaw, Seminole and Choctaw. This educational and entertaining event teaches and perpetuates the history and culture of these tribes through live demonstrations of traditional tribal dance, storytelling performances, craft demonstrations, primitive skills encampment and juried competitions.
Encampment demonstrators Jimmy Sanders and Diamond Brown will set up living history exhibitions and illustrate primitive survival skills used by tribes in the 1700s and 1800s, such as cooking, firemaking, flint- knapping and carving arrowheads.
More than 50 artists and craftsmen will be on hand displaying their indigenous talents. Master craftsmen from each tribe will provide live demonstrations of rivercane basket weaving, finger weaving with beads, mask-making, stone and wood caraving and stamped pottery. Artists will exhibit their works and participate in a juried art competition. archery, blowgun and running contets will test the prowess of the best athletes and competitors from each tribe as they compete for thousands of dollars in cash prizes. Other special events include Cherokee Stickball demonstrations and the launch of the children’s book “Origins of the Milky Way.”
The celebration is open daily on Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. for arts and crafts demonstrations and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday, school groups are invited for group museum tours and festival activities at special discounted rates.
Adult admission is $10; children 6 to 12 are $6; children under 6 are admitted free. Call 828-497-3481 for details. The Cherokee Indian Fair Grounds are located at 745 Tsali Blvd., off U.S. 441 in Cherokee.