Principal cook Bill man Baker, in addition to his wife, Sherry, and also granddaughter Avrie Baker, greet spectators during a previous Cherokee nationwide Holiday Parade in downtown Tahlequah. MIKE BROWN/for the Tulsa World


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Newly crowned miss out on Cherokee 2015, Ja-Li-Si Pittman, rides in her first parade together a goodwill ambassador the the Cherokee Nation. MIKE BROWN/for the Tulsa World


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Principal cook of the Cherokees, Bill john Baker, together with wife Sherry and also granddaughter Avrie Baker, greet the spectators of the Cherokee nationwide Holiday Parade in downtown Tahlequah ~ above Saturday. The yearly parade end at the Cherokee Square where Chief Baker will supply his State that the country Address. MIKE BROWN for the Tulsa World


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Principal chief Bill man Baker delivers his State the the country Address top top the lawn the Tahlequah’s historic Cherokee Square. MIKE BROWN/for the Tulsa World


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Rapping native the ago of a pickup truck, the native American rap duo recognized as Mike Bone from “America’s gained Talent” entertains the crowds in ~ the Cherokee nationwide Holiday Parade in downtown Tahlequah ~ above Saturday morning. MIKE BROWN/for the Tulsa World



The outgoing miss Cherokee, Sunday Plumb of Tahlequah, and also recently crowned little Cherokee Ambassador, 5-year-old Kashyah Tehee the Tahlequah, await the State that the country Address of major Chief Bill man Baker. MIKE BROWN/for the Tulsa World


Principal chef Bill john Baker it is intended his State that the country Address ~ above the lawn that Tahlequah’s historical Cherokee Square. MIKE BROWN/for the Tulsa World


Principal chef Bill man Baker it is provided his State of the country Address top top the lawn of Tahlequah’s historic Cherokee Square. MIKE BROWN/Tulsa World record Photo


Cherokee nation Principal cook Bill man Baker praised Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew’s notice Wednesday that Andrew Jackson will be removed from the prior of the $20 bill. Tulsa world file


Cherokee national Holiday: This yearly Labor day weekend event, start Friday and also lasting three days, celebrates Cherokee legacy and culture in Tahlequah, through a parade, timeless games and also many sellers on hand, and pow-wows top top Friday and Saturday evenings. Cherokee.org


Correction: This story originally had an incorrect variety of Cherokee citizens who room attending events in Tahlequah. It also misidentified a male playing "Amazing Grace" ~ above the flute. It has been corrected.

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TAHLEQUAH — Thousands of civilization are in Tahlequah this weekend for the 63rd Cherokee nationwide Holiday.


Tribal officials said the group in former of the Cherokee country Courthouse on Saturday because that the State the the nation Address and parade was uncountable. Tubs the ice-cold bottled water were plentiful as the temperature hovered near 90 degrees with a warmth index topping 100 degrees.


“I am not Cherokee,” claimed Elizabeth Anderson, just after she greeted a friend utilizing the Cherokee language. “I recognize a couple of words.”


Anderson and also her 6-year-old son, Sawyer, both the Tahlequah, to be perched in a lawn chair together in front of the historical Cherokee nation Courthouse.


“It’s pretty wonderful,” Anderson claimed of the vacation festivities. “There is something from dawn come midnight top top Saturday and also Sunday.”


Events consisted of arts and also crafts, golf tournaments, arts shows, quilt shows, a tribal film festival, powwow, gospel singing, 5k run, marble tournament, blowgun contest, stickball, bingo, fiddler’s contest and also fireworks.


That is simply a sampling the the events over the three-day holiday celebration. The holiday is likewise a day of psychic the signing of the Cherokee country Constitution in 1839.


Teens were watched walking and also texting on your cell phones while their elders dressed in full regalia were fanning themselves with old-fashioned handheld church fans.


Minutes prior to the State of the nation ceremony began, Melissa Whitekiller that Tahlequah to be finishing braiding the long hair of her cousin, Madison Whitekiller, the reigning Junior miss Cherokee.


Dressed in Cherokee nation regalia, Madison inspected the braid with her hand while Melissa carefully secured she cousin’s tiara within she braided locks.


“I simply really prefer the people — and to see them in regalia,” Melissa Whitekiller stated of Saturday’s events.


The rendition that “Amazing Grace” played on a flute by Tommy Wildcat filled the air through an airy medley simply as human being were finding your seats because that the speech.


During his speech, primary Chief Bill man Baker announced he would be sending a nominee come the lack Counsel because that the office that Secretary of organic Resources.


“We aren’t just stewards that these sources today, yet we have an duty to protect them for the following seven generations that Cherokees,” Baker said. “The Cherokee human being deserve clean drinking water that is plentiful, fresh air that is abundant and also a healthy environment to live, work and play.”


Baker additionally addressed health-care issues, saying, “I promised four years earlier to do health care a priority, and also I delivered on the promise by investing $100 million the casino profits to much better the heath and also lives the the Cherokee people.”


Baker touted the expansion and also completed health clinics in Ochelata and also Sallisaw, and the existing health center projects in Jay, Stilwell and also at W.W. Hastings Hospital in Tahlequah.


The hunting and fishing agreement permits Cherokee residents over the age of 16 to obtain a complimentary fishing and hunting patent that is good in all 77 counties, Baker said.


“Cherokees deserve to trophy fish in damaged Bow or hunt for pheasant in western Oklahoma,” Baker said. “This covenant is the an initial of that is kind and also is currently becoming a design for every one of Indian Country.”


Baker additionally highlighted the Macy’s fulfillment center and also the partnership with Stuteville Ford dealership and also Buffalo wings restaurant in Tahlequah.


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Jeffery Price, 58, of Wister to be pronounced dead in ~ the scene in absent Island, troopers said. His passenger, a Wister woman, was flown to Saint Francis Hospital in Tulsa in critical condition, the OHP said.