Grand View School recently hosted a Native American Song and Food Festival wherein approximately 300 parents, students and community members were able to experience an evening of entertainment and cultural awareness.

Choogie Kingfisher emceed this educational event, which allowed attendees the opportunity to hear the Cherokee language vocal talents from the Cherokee Adult Choir, Cherokee Nation Immersion School Choir, and the Grand View School Cherokee Choir. Tonya Still-Russell told a traditional story and played her flute.

Youngsters were encouraged to visit stations where they learned about the stickball game from John Johnson, and blowguns from Cherokee National Treasure Danny McCarter, before moving to other stations and making a beaded bracelet or their own pinch pot to take home.

Lawrence Panther and the adult Cherokee Language participants used the Cherokee syllabary to write names for those that visited their station. Cherokee National Treasures Betty Frogg, Richard Fields, Jane Osti, and Vivian Cottrell were on hand to display their master skills of twining/basketry, bow making, pottery and basket weaving.

Attendees were treated to samples of Native American foods which included kanuchi, hog meat, grape dumplings, pinto beans, fry bread, meat pies, cornmeal cookies, and pishofa, a Chickasaw hominy corn soup. Mary Chanate organized a powwow demonstration and fashion show.

"We had a great turnout," said Glenda Sellers, community liaison. "Many folks donated their talents and skills to help with this event. We hope to continue offering activities like tonight so that our young people can understand and know their culture."

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