Council holds first festival in conjunction with Homecoming

First Posted: 1/15/2009

PEMBROKE -- Thousands of Lumbee Indians flock to Pembroke every summer to participate in Lumbee Homecoming events.
This year, there is a double dose of events to choose from. The first-ever Lumbee Tribal Festival will kick off Friday and continue through Saturday, July 6. The events are sponsored by the Lumbee Tribal Council and will be at the N.C. Cultural Center near Pembroke.
The Tribal Festival will be the same week as the Lumbee Regional Development Association's 34th annual Homecoming. Most of the LRDA events will be in Pembroke and at The University of North Carolina at Pembroke.
The Lumbee Tribal Festival kicks off with a Wagon Train on Friday, which includes free horse rides and camping. The festival will include a golf tournament, sports camp and gospel sing.
Tribal Council members hope the Lumbee Tribal Festival will develop into an annual event.
Danita Locklear, Tribal Festival committee co-chairman, said the festival is family-oriented and offers something for all age groups. “We are anticipating fun, food and fellowship,” Locklear said.
Councilman Linda Hammonds said this event is the beginning of several festivals that will be sponsored by the Tribal Council. Hammonds said she would like to see the council provide various activities throughout the year, not just during Lumbee Homecoming week.
Hammonds said she is anticipating a large turnout.
“There is something for everyone,” she said. “Our goal and responsibility is to the people and to the tribe to provide opportunities through cultural events.”
Hammonds said the Tribal Festival will teach others about the history of the Lumbee people, its culture, and the tribal government. It will not only be a learning experience for the public, but a growing experience for the Tribal Council as well, she said.
“This is our first year and we have a lot of great ideas and many ways we would like to express our relationship as a government to the people,” she said. “We are not able to do everything we would like to do but we will grow and magnify over the years.”
Schedule of Events
(All events will be held at the N.C. Indian Culture Center)
-- Wagon Train Registration begins at noon. The event is free and includes a trail ride, slay pulls, and overnight camping. The Tribal Council is inviting anyone with a horse, mule, or pony to help with the Wagon Train. The Wagon Train will depart at 9 a.m. on Saturday and return at 2 p.m.
The Wagon Train route will follow a path mapped out in and around Pembroke.
-- Golf Tournament Tee time 1 p.m. The Lumbee Tribal Council Scholarship/Community Partnership Golf Tournament will be held at the Riverside Golf Course. A $40 fee includes green fees, cart fees, gift bag and lunch.
-- A golfer who sinks a hole-in-one will win a 2002 Sonoma GMC courtesy of Bleekers Oldsmobile Buick GMC of Red Springs.
July 1
-- KidsFest Applications are being accepted through Friday. Cost is $5. KidsFest is an overnight camping experience for boys and girls ages 7-12. It will include supervised cultural activities, art, crafts and playtime.
July 2
-- Crossing Generations Adventure Registration: 10 a.m. to noon. Cost is $5. The Crossing Generations Adventure, which includes overnight camping, is an experience for mothers, daughters, and grandmothers.
The event will give female tribal members an opportunity to explore and understand their role, not only within a family unit, but as a member of the tribe.
July 3
-- Sports Camp 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. A $2 charge covers a pool fee. Activities will include softball, basketball, lacrosse and swimming.
-- Arts and Craft Showcase - 2 to 8 p.m. at the Longhouse on the grounds of the N.C. Cultural Center. The public is welcome to view American Indian artwork including paintings, poetry, quilts, basketry, beadwork, etc.
-- Tribal Chairman Milton Hunt will give the State of the Tribe address to the general membership. Hunt will also present the government's proposed budget for the 2002-03 fiscal year. It will be at 7 p.m. at the Tribal Office on Union Chapel Road in Pembroke.
July 4
-- Arts and Craft Showcase - 2 to 8 p.m. The public is welcome to view American Indian artwork including paintings, poetry, quilts, basketry, beadwork, etc.
July 5
-- Arts and Craft Showcase - 2 to 8 p.m. The public is welcome to view American Indian artwork including paintings, poetry, quilts, basketry, beadwork, etc.
-- Gospel Sing. The event is free. It begins at 5 p.m. until. The host group is Carla and Redemption. Other featured groups are Chosen Generation, Brother Wilbert and Family, the Prospect's Men's Community Choir, and The McNeills.
July 6
-- Fishing Tournament – 6:30 a.m. to 11 a.m. Competitors under age 16 are admitted free. The cost for competitors 17 and older is $5, which include fishing permit fees.
-- Dinner/Theater Experience -- A steak dinner will be held at 6 p.m. on the grounds of the Cultural Center, followed by the opening performance of “Strike At the Wind!” at 7:30. A $20 charge covers the dinner and ticket costs.

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