City Of Tulsa Celebrates First Native American Day
TULSA, Oklahoma -
The City of Tulsa is recognizing "Native American Day" for the first time, and it's being celebrated Monday at Guthrie Green with several Indian tribes taking part.
The observance has the blessing of many tribes, including Cherokee, Creek and Osage Nations, the three tribes with land that converges in Tulsa.
The celebration is happening in conjunction with the Columbus Day holiday with a number of events at Tulsa's Guthrie Green.
The celebration follows a resolution last month, establishing Native American Day on the second Monday of October.
It's the first official observance, by the city, after the Tulsa Indian Affairs Commission worked to make it official with the City just a couple of weeks ago.
There is still the "Columbus Day" holiday - it's not been changed, but the City Council approved an overlapping holiday as Native American Day.
It came out of a meeting between Tulsa's Mayor and several tribal chiefs.
"Of all the cities in America, Tulsa may be one that's had the greatest impact by Native Americans," said Tulsa Mayor G.T. Bynum.
An estimated 30,000 Cherokees alone live in the Tulsa area - many more Native Americans from other tribes are here as well.
"We are rich with culture, with language, with history, and today serves as a tribute to those people who live here who represent those cultures and histories, but it also pays tribute to our ancestors and acknowledges our unfortunate shared history with this country," said Kimberly Teehee with the Tulsa Indian Affairs Commission.
The observance continues through 2 p.m. Monday, October 9 at Guthrie Green, and will take place every year on this day.