TAHLEQUAH, Okla. – The 2014-2015 Miss Keetoowah Cherokee and Junior Miss Keetoowah Cherokee were crowned on Friday, August 15th at the Tahlequah Armory Municipal Center.
The evening began with the Keetoowah Cherokee Veterans Honor Guard posting the colors, followed by a welcome from Keetoowah Cherokee Chief George Wickliffe, and introductions of the judges, tabulators and special guests.
There were five young ladies competing for the title of Junior Miss Keetoowah Cherokee. Each contestant was required to be between the ages of 13 and 17, be a United Keetoowah Band member and be enrolled in school.
The contestants were Destinee Gabbrielle Frogg, 14, from Colcord; Manaynie Leona McCarter, 17, from Kenwood; Raelie Noel Grayson, 15, from Tahlequah; Caleigh Hope Smith, 14, from Salina; and Sarah Ann McCarter, 13, from Kenwood.
Each contestant introduced herself to the audience, described her traditional attire, presented an essay, demonstrated her talent and participated in a question and answer session containing cultural and impromptu questions.
At the end of the competition, 15-year-old Raelie Grayson was named the 2014-2015 Junior Miss Keetoowah Cherokee.
Native American arts and crafts, Cherokee Homecoming Art Show among weekend activities
TAHLEQUAH, Okla. – The Cherokee Heritage Center is treating guests to three days of fun-filled activities during the 62nd Annual Cherokee National Holiday this Labor Day weekend, Aug. 29-31.
“The Cherokee National Holiday weekend is one of the busiest, most fun times of the year here at the Cherokee Heritage Center,” said Dr. Candessa Tehee, executive director of the Cherokee Heritage Center. “Guests who visit us will find a lot of great Native American art for sale, a wide variety of tasty food options and different types of live entertainment.”
TAHLEQUAH, Okla. – University of Arkansas senior Sunday Plumb, of Tahlequah, was named the new Miss Cherokee at a leadership competition held Saturday at Cornerstone Fellowship Church in Tahlequah.
Plumb, 21, receives a $3,000 scholarship and for the next year will represent the Cherokee Nation as a goodwill ambassador to promote the government, history, language and culture of the Cherokee people.
Plumb, the daughter of Loyal and Susan Plumb, competed against five young women for the crown. The Miss Cherokee Leadership Competition judged contestants on their use of the Ch
erokee language, cultural and platform presentations, and impromptu interviews.
“It was such an honor to compete with all of these women. I truly believe every single one of them would be an awesome candidate, but I’m really excited I won,” Plumb said after being crowned. “It’s such an awesome feeling to be able to represent the Cherokee Nation as Miss Cherokee.”
Plumb is studying Animal Science at the University of Arkansas. She is a member of the Native American Student Association and volunteers for Girls Scouts of America. She enjoys gathering traditional foods, shooting blow guns, weaving baskets and making Cherokee tear dresses.
For her cultural presentation, Plumb performed a detailed explanation on the history and cultural significance of the tear dress. Her platform tackled the issue of low graduation and retention rates of Native Americans in college compared to other ethnicities. She wants to start a program that gives current Cherokee college students the ability to speak to high school juniors and seniors about what they can expect in a college environment, both socially and academically.
For Plumb’s impromptu question, judges asked, “If you could start a project that would change the lives of Cherokee youth, what would it look like?”
“I really want to get started on my Cherokee college retention initiative,” Plumb answered the judges. “I want to start mentoring students as soon as possible, so we can further assist to ensure the academic success of our Cherokee students.”
Plumb was featured on KTUL Channel 8’s Good Day Tulsa Monday morning and will make a public appearance at Saturday’s State of the Nation Address at the 62nd Cherokee National Holiday this Labor Day weekend.
Miss Cherokee first runner-up was Ja-Li-Si Pittman, 20, of Tahlequah, who earned a $2,000 scholarship. Second runner-up was Nina Ashley Hopton, 22, of Salina, who earned a $1,000 scholarship.
PAWHUSKA, Okla. – Autumn may seem a long way off, but soon it will be upon us, offering up cool breezes for the 10th annual National Indian Taco Championship on October 4. With the event come aromas of freshly cooked Indian tacos, interesting vendors and traders, competitions, music, American Indian dancing and a variety of entertainment.