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Amazing tales as told by the Cherokee storytellers themselves. Imagine you’re gathered around a roaring bonfire, the occasional spark shooting high into the night sky, as a strong but gentle voice begins a story you’ve never heard. As the drama builds, you’re nearly breathless, your own heartbeat matching the occasional beat of the hand drum the storyteller uses. Drawing from a rich oral tradition dating back millennia, the Cherokee Bonfire series runs throughout the tourism season, and is an enchanting way to interact with the rich details of the Cherokee people and their stories. Get your room reserved in Cherokee, grab a blanket and someone close to you, and enjoy a cultural experience only Cherokee can offer.
The Bonfire stories crackle from 7:00–9:00 p.m. on the following dates at Oconaluftee Islands Park, on Tsali Blvd.: Wednesdays, Fridays & Saturdays, May 22 - October 12. Expanded schedule for July 1-6. No bonfires in September.
In honor of Tim Hill, a longtime employee at our very own trout hatchery who sadly passed away far too soon, we’re inviting you to fish and compete in this fun and lucrative tournament in his name. A portion of your $11 entry fee will be donated to a charity (yet to be determined) to help us pay tribute to Tim. You’ll be fishing for your share of $10,000 by catching beautiful fish in rivers all across the Qualla Boundary (excluding the 2.2 miles of catch-and-release waters), which will be stocked with tagged fish. Tagged fish will be specially stocked for this event, and when you catch one, you redeem it for cash prizes ranging from $25 to $5,000 at the Natural Resources Enforcement Office located at 5175 Sequoyah Trail of Hwy 441. Register anywhere fishing licenses are sold. Fishing will start one hour before sunrise and end one hour after sunset each day. Open to all ages and for all legal fishing methods. Prize redemption will run from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. each tournament day.
The second Saturday of every month, the Museum of the Cherokee Indian offers a family-friendly fun day of free cultural activities including traditional dancing, storytelling, cultural arts demonstrations, genealogy workshops, hands-on craft workshops and more. Traditional food is available on-site, weather permitting. The Cherokee Friends offer workshops on traditional dancing and cultural arts demonstrations including wampum belt making, moccasin making, stickball stick making, wood carving, fire making, and more. Hands-on workshops are taught by members of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians and often include making a clay medallion or a traditional Cherokee pot stamped with wooden paddles carved with designs. Different members of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians share stories and flute music. Every month includes activities related to that month’s theme. For example, January, the windy month, will include workshops on how to play the Cherokee flute, blowgun demonstrations, and an outstanding panel of storytellers.
Activities are sponsored by the Museum, the North Carolina Arts Council, and the Cherokee Preservation Foundation. Regular prices apply to food and to admission to Museum exhibits.
Sponsored by the North American Indian Women’s Association (NAIWA), the Blueberry Festival features fresh berries, delicious recipes, blueberry products, and fun activities for the whole family. Admission is free to the public. Vendor space is available. Carmaleta Monteith. 828-497-2717.
Concession stand opens
Adult and youth baking competition
10 a.m.–2 p.m.