Calling all Chickasaws to our Annual Meeting & Festival!
It will very soon be that special time of year when all Chickasaws come together to share and celebrate our awesome Chickasaw heritage!
Our 58th Annual Meeting of the Chickasaw Nation and 30th Annual Chickasaw Festival run from Sept. 28 through Oct.6. As is traditional, our meetings, events and celebrations will be centered in our historic capitol city of Tishomingo.
The Annual Meeting and Festival are always a great way to share experiences with family, friends and new acquaintances. These traditional events provide us the wonderful opportunity to reconnect with our Chickasaw heritage, traditions and culture. We revisit and honor our history as we come together as our ancestors have for generations!
Our theme is “A Gathering of Our People.” We will gather together in venues throughout the Chickasaw Nation for great events, great fellowship and celebration of our unique and rich history.
This year kicks off with social stickball and traditional Stomp Dance at Kullihoma beginning at 7 p.m., Friday, Sept. 28. Dancing continues until midnight. Be sure to join us this year!
Throughout the week, we host students from around the area to learn about the Chickasaw Nation during guided educational tours. There are also tours of the Tishomingo museums and the Chickasaw White House open to everyone.
Saturday, Sept. 29 is packed full of fun events for the entire family. At Kullihoma, kids and adults will compete in the traditional Cornstalk Shoot. In Tishomingo, the day kicks off with a 5k run and 1-mile fun walk at 8:30. The coed slo-pitch softball tournament and golf tournament both begin at 9 in Tishomingo, while the Pontotoc Pursuit bicycle ride begins at Wintersmith Park in Ada. The annual Junior Olympics are set for 10 at the Tishomingo High School football field, and stickball demonstrations will go on throughout the day at the historic capitol.
Monday, Oct. 1 features our traditional Chickasaw Princess Pageant at 6 p.m. at Ada High School. Three young ladies will be selected to serve as our Chickasaw Royalty. We are very proud of our young Chickasaw women and their dedication to our traditions. We very much hope to see you there!
Our Chickasaw elders will compete in the annual Senior Olympics beginning at 10 a.m., Tuesday, Oct. 2 at the Johnston County Sports Complex in Tishomingo. Please come out and support our elders!
Thursday, Oct. 4 features the traditional Cultural Evening at 4 p.m. at the Chickasaw Cultural Center in Sulphur. The Arts & Culture Awards will be presented during the evening.
Friday, Oct. 5 kicks off the very popular Southeastern Art Show and Market, open at 9 a.m. on the Capitol grounds. You will find an outstanding array of beautiful artwork!
Saturday, Oct. 6 is, of course, our biggest day with the State of the Nation address at 9 a.m., at Murray State College, followed by the annual parade down Tishomingo’s Main Street. The traditional Chickasaw meal will be served at noon on the Capitol lawn.
Also on Saturday’s Annual Meeting day, everyone can enjoy cultural demonstrations, the health fair and the ongoing Art Show. Kids will love the petting zoo, inflatables and make-and-take crafts tents.
Of course, there is so much more for everyone! Coming together as a community is such an important element of being Chickasaw.
Isn’t it time you made your plans to attend the Annual Meeting and Chickasaw Festival? Make time this year to renew and refresh your connection with your tribe!
I look forward to seeing you this year!