Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Ya'll's Invited~!

It's that time again.

This coming weekend is the annual Choctaw Nation Labor Day Festival in our backyard... Tushka Homma, Oklahoma, to be exact.  Really, there's no other place to be in Oklahoma.  We just celebrate being Choctaws, just folks, probably related, and seeing old friends again.

There will be about 50,000 our cousins in town for the weekend.

It does become personal honestly, and a strong reminder of who we are, how close we all are, how our lives intertwine.  See the new babies, meet the new husband, ride the rides, weave a basket, pitch horseshoes, play championship checkers, listen to the old stories, gripe directly to the government, whatever-- you can do it all this weekend.

Did I mention that it is all FREE?  It is all free, even the top-name, country concerts.  Now I did.

The center of the known universe will be less than five miles from my livingroom for four days, and Leticia and I open up our home as much as we can (dare) to house friends visiting Tushka Homma.  Last year, for example, we had couples sleep on our (screened) front porch, on our deck, in the game room, and tents pitched behind the garage. I think 13 or 14 people around for the weekend.    We put on a good BBQ Friday and Saturday afternoons, and plenty of Leti's frybread, before we all go down to Tushka Homma.

Next weekend won't be any different:  Come by, say "Halito, chim achukma? Can you put us up?"

Lovingly lifted from ChoctawNation *com:  

The Choctaw Nation is holding its 66th annual Labor Day Festival Aug. 29-Sept. 2 at its capitol grounds near Tuskahoma, Okla. Top entertainment, lots of fun and Choctaw cultural activities keep people coming back every year.

“The Nation’s festival is a tradition,” Chief Greg Pyle says. “Some of the people have been coming since they were kids. We try to give everyone a chance to enjoy what they like best whether it’s the concerts, the culture, the sports or just the great food.

“The surrounding communities prepare well in advance for the surge of visitors. We appreciate how everyone works with us,” Pyle continued. “Most of the Nation’s employees work the long weekend to provide a memorable holiday for others. We are grateful for all the hard work it takes to prepare and hold an event of this magnitude. It’s as much fun for us, though, as it is for all of our thousands of visitors.” 

(Retired) Choctaw Chief Pyle,  Assistant (Now) Chief Gary Batton and the Tribal Council have agreed it is important to provide several cost-free activities at the festival such as the concerts and carnival rides because many are not able to afford the expense. All of the sports tournaments are also free to enter, which has increased participation, keeping the Red Warrior Sports Complex a hub of activity.

Giving is in the heart of the Choctaw,” Pyle said. "The Choctaw Nation welcomes the opportunity to bring everyone together", he continued.

The Choctaw National Day of Prayer opens a day of fellowship, worship and song at 7 a.m. Sunday, Sept. 1, at the war memorial. The worship service is followed by another service in the church tent near the amphitheater and a whole afternoon and evening of gospel singing. The sounds of worship can be heard across the grounds as performers begin lifting their voices. Twenty-nine acts begin singing in 15-minute intervals leading into concerts by the southern gospel group Gold City and contemporary Christian musician Jeremy Camp. Camp has 25 No. 1 radio singles including the recent “Overcome” from his album “We Cry Out.”

Like I say, this will be the center of the known universe next weekend, two days away.  An' I wan' see ya here~!  Let's party~!

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