Native American Heritage Festival Set for Nov. 3 at RSU

A powwow singing workshop, a stomp dance, Cherokee storytelling, arts and craft workshops will be featured during the 2012 Native American Heritage Festival on Saturday, Nov. 3, at Rogers State University.

The festival, which is free and open to the public, will be held from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. in the Centennial Center on the RSU campus in Claremore, 1701 W. Will Rogers Blvd.

The RSU Native American Heritage Festival is co-sponsored by the RSU Native American Student Association and RSU Department of Fine Arts.

“Our festival is a great opportunity for the campus and community to experience making authentic American Indian crafts, hear traditional storytelling and even witness a ‘stomp dance,’ or the traditional music of Native American people who came from the Southeast,” said Dr. Hugh Foley, RSU fine arts professor and festival organizer.

Free arts and crafts classes will be offered for adults and children from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Participants can learn how to make corn husk dolls, baskets, cane flutes, beaded necklaces and dream catchers in a “make it and take it” format.

Robert Lewis, will present Cherokee storytelling at 1 p.m.

Joe Don Waters, of Kiowa and Ponca descent, will present a powwow singing workshop at 2 p.m.

Representatives from the United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians will present Cherokee culture and traditions at 3 p.m.

Marvin Diamond, of Oteo-Missouria descent, will present about instruments and spirituality of the Native America Church at 4 p.m.

From 5 to 7 p.m., the “First Nations of Oklahoma Legacy” video series will present “The Original Language of God: History and Concepts of Cherokee Ceremonial Songs Known as ‘Stomp Dances'” and “Public/Social ‘Stomp Dance’ Videos from Oklahoma: 1990-2001” in the Centennial Center ballroom. Indian tacos from the RSU Native American Student Association will be sold from noon to 4 p.m.

The evening will conclude with a traditional stomp dance of Southeastern American Indian tribes from 7 to 10 p.m. The stomp dance will be hosted by the Tallahassee (Wvkokye) Ceremonial Grounds of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation. David Proctor (Muscogee/Creek) will be Mekko and Sam Proctor (Muscogee/Creek) will serve as Heles Hayv (advisor). Roman Hill (Muscogee/Creek) will serve as emcee. All leaders, shell-shakers and the public are welcome to participate.

The festival is funded by a grant from the Oklahoma Arts Council. Through state appropriations and grants from the National Endowment for Arts, the Oklahoma Arts Council funds more than 1,200 events annually with an estimated total attendance of more than 3.5 million. Projects funded by the Oklahoma Arts Council generally account for more than $20 million in grants and matching funds distributed throughout Oklahoma’s economy throughout the state’s rural and urban communities.

All events will be held in the Ballroom and East Veranda of the Centennial Center.

For more information on the festival, call 918-343-7566 or email [email protected].