Cherokee, North Carolina
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Cherokee is a town in Swain County, North Carolina, USA.
It is the headquarters for the Eastern Band of the Cherokee Indians.
It is also a tourist-oriented area, located at the entrance to Great Smoky Mountains National Park and
the southern end of the Blue Ridge Parkway, and the site of a Harrahs Cherokee Casino.
It is located in western North Carolina on the Oconaluftee River and the Qualla Reservation,
and on U.S. Highway 441.
An outdoor drama depicting the Eastern Band's story, Unto These Hills, is presented annually
during the tourist season.
The population is about 1/3 Cherokee.
The town is known in the past for its stereotypical representation of Native Americans.
However, in recent years the Tribe has worked hard to overcome this and is currently working on a project
to renovate the entire "tourist" area, has given notice to many shops that are considered tacky or fitting into the
The Tribe has built many more cultural centers.
Although many of the stereotypical representations of Native Americans still exist in the "tourist trap" stores,
these will soon be gone, to be replaced by a more tasteful atmosphere of celebration of the native culture and peoples.
The Tribe has plans to build new, state-of-the-art schools and health care facilities, and has taken an interest in
preserving the pride of the people.
A basic understanding Eastern Cherokee history, culture, and crafts may be had by attending a performance of
Unto These Hills, visiting the Museum of the Cherokee Indian along with the Qualla Arts and Crafts center,
where you can buy authentic Cherokee arts and crafts, and strolling through the Oconaluftee Indian Village,
where you can see the crafts practiced as well as learning more about Cherokee history and society.
read full wikipedia reference about Cherokee, North Carolina
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