Arts + Entertainment

fr birdtownSwain County voters living in Cherokee and Whittier will begin a new routine on Election Day this November. The precinct’s longtime polling place in Whittier is moving five miles down the road to Birdtown, a change that board of elections officials say was prompted by accessibility concerns. 

out frUnder a clear sky and afternoon sun, the winding road through Cherokee and out past Birdtown is a beautiful one. It’s a trek that employees at the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians’ Office of Environment and Natural Resources have been making a lot over the past several months. 

With the ribbon now cut on a 2,200-square-foot greenhouse and a black-clothed grow yard filled with 33,000 native plants representing 32 species, they’ve finally got something to show for it. 

fr snowbirdyouthA dream eight years in the making met reality earlier this month when the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians cut the ribbon on a new youth center in Snowbird. The 15,000-square-foot building will offer Cherokee youth opportunities ranging from Cherokee language and craft classes to help with homework. 

Michell Hicks, Principal Chief of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, told a U.S. Senate committee in testimony on July 23 that gaming on the Cherokee reservation in North Carolina has had a “dramatic impact” on the lives of Cherokee families and especially children in ways “we never dreamed possible.”

Discovery of a Cherokee gravesite on the soon-to-be ballfield complex at Macon County’s Parker Meadows property will likely mean that the county has to tweak its design. Though no final decision has been made, a series of meetings between county and Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians leaders has made it clear that the tribe wants the gravesite to stay right where it is. 

art fr1Hundreds of Elvis Presley fans converged on Cherokee last weekend to pay homage to the King. They arrived from a five-state area for a tribute to beat all tributes.

The goal: to amass the most Elvis impersonators ever convened under one roof. If successful, the gathering at Harrah’s Cherokee Casino would go down in Guinness Book of World Record history.

For Mary McCall, it was a crowning moment in her lifelong adoration of Elvis. She’s seen hundreds of Elvis tribute artists, usually swooning and screaming at the edge of the stage and, on lucky nights, going home with a scarf lowered down to the ladies just like Elvis used to do.

Macon County’s project to turn the 48-acre Parker Meadows project into a tournament-level softball and baseball complex met some complications when construction turned up a Cherokee burial site. 

“You might hear rumors to that effect, so we’ll go ahead and confirm them,” County Commission Chairman Kevin Corbin said at the board’s July 8 meeting. 

One month after low oxygen levels killed the bacteria needed to process sewage at the Cherokee Wastewater Treatment Plant, discharge flowing back into the Oconaluftee River is still on the cloudy side as employees work to get the plant fully back online. It’s not clear exactly what killed the bacteria, but the best guess is it has something to do with 8 tons of sand employees removed right around the time the bacteria crashed. 

Cherokee Bear Zoo hoped a federal civil lawsuit alleging it mistreats grizzly bears in its care would be tossed out.

fr casinoTwo months after a management shake-up in which the Tribal Casino Gaming Enterprise removed construction manager Sneed, Robertson and Associates from the casino construction project in Murphy, the project is on time and on budget, according to TCGE chairman Ray Rose. 

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  • Books that help bridge the political divide
    Books that help bridge the political divide Time for spring-cleaning.  The basement apartment in which I live could use a deep cleaning: dusting, washing, vacuuming. It’s tidy enough — chaos and I were never friends — but stacks of papers need sorting, bookcases beg to see their occupants removed and the shelves…
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