8th Annual Festival of Native Peoples in Pictures

Warriors of Anikituwah (Eastern Band of Cherokee) taught audience members traditional dances, such as the Buffalo Dance and the Friendship Dance.

A view from the bottom of a 100 foot pole used by the Voladores Pole Flyers (Totonac).

The Voladores Pole Flyers.

The climb begins!

Onlookers relax while waiting on the men to take flight.

You aren’t seeing things– This man is standing on top of the pole 100 feet in the air!

Up, up and away!

Here they come!

Remember the man at the top? This is how he comes down!

No hands!

Lands with a helping hand.

A job well done!

Professionals from Swamp Men, Gator Boys, and the movie Jack Ass show off their handling skills with snapping turtles, snakes, and alligators!

Now that’s a big mouth!

Showing the crowd a Copperhead.

You wouldn’t want to run into this Water Moccasin!

This Rattle Snake wasn’t a happy camper!

We prefer the snakes that aren’t poisonous!

This guy is brave!

Whew! That was close!

Showing off the gator’s ‘Florida smile.’

The Raven Rock Dancers (Eastern Band of Cherokee) share more traditional dances.

The crowd was active and very interested in learning about all of the different tribes.

Vendors made sure guests didn’t go hungry. (Reed’s Frybread)

Craft vendors sold authentic tribal arts and crafts, many of which were handmade.

Storytellers told of how the Cherokee people survived years ago and bridged the gap between the old and new world.

Blog post and all photos by Alisha Lambert- Insight Marketing, Marketing Assistant

8th Annual Festival of Native Peoples

Don’t forget the 8th Annual Festival of Native Peoples is happening THIS WEEKEND, July 13-14, 11 a.m.-8 p.m. at the Cherokee Indian Fairgrounds!

Enjoy Native American music, food, arts, and crafts of some of the oldest documented tribes.

For a complete list of times and events, click here!

Spend the Weekend in Cherokee!

Looking for fun and adventure? Then Cherokee is the place for you, as the weekend is packed with something for the whole family!

July 13-14: 8th Annual Festival of Native Peoples. Enjoy Native American music, food, arts, and crafts of some of the oldest documented tribes.

July 13-15: Mid-Summer Trout Fishing Tournament. The rivers of the Cherokee Indian Reservation will be stocked with $10,000 in tagged fish!

July 16: The premier of “Cherokee Family Reunion”; a live outdoor comedy at the Mountainside Theatre.


Also, don’t forget about the 11th Annual Talking Trees Trout Derby on August 4!


Blog post written by Alisha Lambert, Insight Marketing~ Marketing Assistant

Cherokee Family Reunion

CHEROKEE FAMILY REUNION, by Larissa Fasthorse, is a comedy with heart for the whole family. Set in modern day Cherokee N.C., the longtime widower of a Cherokee family has found love again with a woman from “up north,” Emma White.

Before the wedding decorations are down, the two nearly grown families are thrown into planning the biggest family reunion of the year; complete with a historic performance of Cherokee history. Emma bravely leads the charge to reenact Henry Timberlake’s visit to the Cherokee Nation in 1761. But the new family quickly runs into a minefield of culture shock, who can tell what history, family ties and young love.Through music, dance and some wild fights everyone learns what it really means to be a family and a Cherokee today.

Mountainside Theatre will present five special showings of, “Cherokee Family Reunion” on July 16, 20, 24, 26, and 30. The show starts at 8 p.m. at Mountainside Theatre. Ticket prices vary by seat location in the venue. Adult tickets range from $18-22; Children (6-12) range from $8-12, and Children five and under are free (prices vary based on general admission and reserved seating).

For tickets to “Cherokee Family Reunion,” call toll free (866) 554-4557, or visit www.cherokeeadventure.com

37th Annual Cherokee Pow Wow

The thirty-seventh annual Cherokee Pow Wow took place on June 29- July 1, at the Acquoni Expo Center in Cherokee, N.C.

This event captured the strong cultural traditions of family and spirituality, mixed with “a healthy dose of competition,” (visitcherokeenc.com).

Hundreds of world-champion dancers from across the nation competed for prizes of thousands of dollars. Even in the midst of the heat, the pow wow combined traditions, such as the playing of the drum, song, and dance, that exposed the roots of all types of Native American tribes.

Crafters from all over the US set up shop on the former Cherokee High School football field, where they displayed and sold traditional Native American crafts from a variety of tribes, such as pottery, jewelry, dream catchers, traditional clothing and much more.

The Cherokee Pow Wow has been a community event for 37 years. This year’s event was sponsored by LRE/ Royal Electric, LLC., an American Indian owned company; Principal Chief, Michell Hicks; and Vice Chief, Larry Blythe.


Blog post and photos by Alisha Lambert, Insight Marketing~ Marketing Assistant

Cherokee Voices Festival

For years the Cherokee Voices Festival, held at the Museum of the Cherokee Indian, has showcased many aspects of the Cherokee culture. This year’s festival was held on June 9. From art and craft demonstrations, to living history encampments, dancing, storytelling, and music; this festival allows visitors to learn from, and interact with members of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians in their homeland.

This festival is unique because it allows visitors to witness Cherokee traditions that are hundreds, even thousands of years old right before their eyes.

The festival also featured many North Carolina Arts Council award winning musicians, storytellers, potters, and many more. Traditional music, such as flute playing and the singing of gospel songs in the Cherokee language filled the air for hours. Crafters displayed and created shell necklaces, blow guns, and much more. Traditional Indian dinners were also for sale, which included fried chicken, turnip greens, hominy, and a Cherokee classic, bean bread.

Visitors from all over the US, as well as locals come to the festival each year. This was a great opportunity and learning experience for school groups, summer camps, and tourists.

The North Carolina Arts Council and the Museum of the Cherokee Indian have sponsored this festival since 1998.

For more information about the Cherokee Voices Festival or the Museum of the Cherokee Indian, go to www.cherokeemuseum.org.

Blog post written by Alisha Lambert, Insight Marketing~ Marketing Assistant

Unto These Hills

“We are the people rising up from the ashes… we’re gonna fly so high.” These are the words sung by actors and actresses, young and old, as the sun sets. Surrounded by tall, lush green trees, the sound of instruments and voices invite you Unto These Hills.

This famous production tells the story of the Cherokee people from the arrival of the Spanish explorer, Hernando DeSoto; the Battle at Horseshoe Bend; the Indian Removal Act that forced the Cherokee out of their homeland and on the long journey to Oklahoma, also known today as The Trail of Tears. Unto These Hills honors and remembers the brave warriors, such as Sequoyah, Junaluska, and Tsali, who sacrificed everything for their people and their nation.

Cherokee stories and traditions are passed down to younger generations, as young people work at the Mountainside Theater as actors and actresses, ticket takers, ushers, concession workers, and stage crew members. They have the opportunity to hear the stories of their ancestors so that one day, they too can pass them down to their children and grandchildren.

The show has been completely revamped and reconcepted to better portray the Cherokee’s history. Also new this year is the premier of Cherokee Family Reunion. A contemporary play by Larissa Fast-Horse that shows Cherokee life today and the modern-day issues the Cherokee people deal with. The show will premier on June 16 and will run alongside Unto These Hills for the rest of the season.

The atmosphere and scenery are beautiful. You can feel the rich history as you relive the Cherokee story. You’re inspired by the victory and strength that came from great tragedy. Unto These Hills is a must see on your visit to Cherokee, N.C.

For more information about Unto These Hills or Mountainside Theater, go to www.cherokeeadventure.com.

Blog post written by Alisha Lambert, Insight Marketing~ Marketing Assistant

Emissaries of Peace

Emissaries of Peace scenes have begun in the Oconaluftee Indian Village. These short plays are performed on Wednesdays and Fridays and tell the story of Lieutenant Henry Timberlake and his mission to bring peace after the tragic massacre of twenty-eight Cherokee Peace Chiefs that were being held at Fort Prince George enrages the Cherokee. It’s a riveting, insightful story in three scenes that’s not to be missed.

Scene 1: Bury the Hatchet at Council House at 11:30am
After surviving a near disastrous journey down the Holston and Little Tennessee River, Lieutenant Henry Timberlake arrives in the Cherokee lands.

Accompanied by Sergeant Thomas Sumpter and interpreter John McCormack, the Lieutenant is invited into the Council House of Tommotly, where he and Chief Ostenaco must seek to end hostilities between the Cherokee and British.

Scene 2: The Ties that Bind at 1800s Cabin at 1:00pm
During a quiet moment in Timberlake’s expedition, he encounters Mary Hughes, a white settler who has been adopted into the Cherokee. Mary’s history is not quite what Timberlake expects it to be, and he is given a new view on Cherokee life.

Scene 3: Destination Truth! at Square Grounds at 2:30pm
Rumors circulate among the Cherokee after the arrival of a runner. Bringing news of a recent attack against the Cherokee, the fragile peace that has been established by Timberlake and Ostenaco could end in tragedy.

Information and photo from rockhousepartners.net

Oconaluftee Indian Village

Have you ever wondered how the Cherokee really lived hundreds of years ago? If so, don’t believe all the rumors you might have heard about them living in tee pees because it isn’t true. If you really want to understand how they lived, a visit to the Oconaluftee Indian Village is just for you.

As you enter The Village, you are swept away to the 18th Century and greeted by a Cherokee man or women dressed in the traditional clothing of the time. You are surrounded by lush green vegetation, and your spirit is calmed by the sound of cool mountain streams. The beauty of this particular attraction is that you are given the opportunity to step away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life, and invited to be a part of a close-nit culture that is surrounded by nature. As you walk around The Village, your sense of smell is awakened by the burning wood and coals.

Tour guides will lead you through The Village, or you are free to tour the grounds at your own pace. On your tour, you will witness how the Cherokee lived centuries ago. Right before your eyes crafters create bead work, pottery, baskets, arrowheads, and wood carvings. You will discover the different types of homes and buildings the Cherokee built before metal tools and then after their invention. Some of the buildings you will see are smaller replications of a council house, where meetings were conducted with each of the seven clans within The Village, as well as where the people would go when they were sick.

One of the most interesting locations of The Village is the Square Grounds. Here, you can listen to stories about why the opossum plays dead and the origins of the bear. There is also traditional dancing, such as the friendship dance, the corn dance, the bear dance, the buffalo dance, and the horse dance. All of these stories and dances celebrate the beauty of nature and the culture that is Cherokee.

After your tour, you can continue to relax with a cool drink and snack from the concession area. You will want to be sure and buy a souvenir from the gift shop to remember your visit forever. The Village souvenir program is a great way to for your children to explore and interact.

Oconaluftee Indian Village truly allows visitors to witness the everyday life of the Cherokee from hundreds of years ago in one of the most beautiful locations on Earth.

For more information on the Oconaluftee Indian Village and ticket information click here.

Blog post written by Alisha Lambert, Marketing Assistant~Insight Marketing