Cherokee Heritage Center

The Center consists of a living history Cherokee village, a museum, and small township of historical buildings. Dedicated to the perservation of Cherokee culture and history, it is one of the most widely visited Native American sites in Oklahoma.

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Monday, June 13, 2005

Trail of Tears Drama Offers Family Entertainment

It is time once again for the Cherokee Heritage Center’s annual production of the Trail of Tears drama. The family-friendly production begins Saturday, June 18, at 8 p.m. in the 1,800-seat Tsa La Gi Amphitheater located on the grounds of the Cherokee Heritage Center.

“Spending time with your family under the stars watching the Trail of Tears drama is a memorable experience,” said playwright Richard A. Fields. “It is a great way to get a taste of Cherokee culture, experience the pageantry of outdoor drama, and learn the story of the Cherokee removal.”

For several years numerous talented actors have performed under the night sky portraying the forced removal of the Cherokee people. This year, the new Trail of Tears drama will bring back the music, pageantry and spectacle missing from last year’s show. The new drama depicts several Cherokee myths and legends such as “Rabbit Eats with Bear” and “How Possum’s Tale Got Bare.” These stories, mixed with the removal and several aspects of Cherokee history, give the show a lighter feel that the entire family can enjoy.

“We listened to the feedback of our visitors,” said Fields. “The audiences missed the music and pageantry of previous dramas, and they wanted some lighter moments.”

Proving there is more to Cherokee history than the commonly thought of removal, known as the Trail of Tears, this year’s drama is filled with entertaining myths, legends, spectacle and dance.

“The hardest part of writing the drama was not what to write, but what not to write,” said Fields. “We wanted a story that told the story of the Trail of Tears, but was not so depressing that no one would want to hear it. We wanted to share our culture while respecting it, and this is hard to do in a short drama. The Cherokee story is too great to tell in one and a half hours, yet it is too important not to tell at all.”

Making the drama even more appealing to families is this year’s reduced ticket prices. Ticket prices have been reduced to $12 for adults, $6 for children (K – 12), and $10 for seniors (55 +) and college students (with ID). The Trail of Tears Drama opens June 18 and runs every Thursday, Friday and Saturday through September 3 at 8 p.m. with a special final performance on Sunday, September 4.

For more information on the Trail of Tears drama call (918) 456-6007, toll free at (888) 999-6007, or visit the Web site at www.cherokeeheritage.org.

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