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August Issue 2006

Qualla Arts and Crafts Mutual in Cherokee, NC, Offer Open Air Indian Market - Sept. 2, 2006

Members of the Qualla Arts and Crafts Mutual in Cherokee, NC, will participate in the Open Air Indian Market from 9am-5pm on Sept. 2, 2006, on the grounds of the Qualla Arts and Crafts Mutual at 645 Tsali Blvd. in Cherokee. The event is free and will feature basket weaving, pottery, wood carving, finger weaving, beadwork, stone carving and fine painting. Artist demonstrations will be ongoing and food will be available.

This is an opportunity for the public to interact with artists one-on-one, said Vicki Ledford, manager of the Qualla Arts and Crafts Mutual. "All the artists participate and customers get to meet them individually, in a relaxed setting," said Ledford. "It's enjoyable for everyone."

This is the market's fourth year, and both artist participation and crowd size continue to grow. According to Butch Goings, a wood and stone carver and president of the Qualla Arts and Crafts board, the popular Santa Fe Indian Market inspired the local version. "The Santa Fe Indian Market is one of the best-known events in the world for American Indian artists to meet personally with the public and share their art and culture. We'd like to someday build up our market to something like that."

Goings and his wife, basket maker Louise Goings, both plan to participate in the market. She recently demonstrated white oak basket-making as part of the 2006 Smithsonian Folklife Festival in Washington, DC.

The Qualla Arts and Crafts Mutual is celebrating its 60th year as an organization formed to promote the sales of arts and crafts of members of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians. Artisans must go through a juried process to become affiliated with the organization and current membership stands at about 300. The gallery, located across from the Museum of the Cherokee Indian in the Cherokee arts district, is open daily, year round, with seasonal hours. For more information about the market or gallery, call the Qualla Arts and Crafts Mutual at 828/497-3103.

Cherokee's other cultural attractions include the Oconaluftee Indian
Village, a 1750 replica of a Cherokee village; The Museum of the Cherokee Indian, interpreting the tribe's history in the Smoky Mountains; and the summer outdoor drama "Unto These Hills."

For more information, visit (www.cherokee-nc.com) or call 800/438-1601.



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