By KRISTINA HYATT
MISS CHEROKEE 2011
January has been a very busy month, not much traveling, but full of trying to get everything ready for my big trip to Washington, DC in February. Many people have assisted me in preparing to represent the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians in the best way possible. Richard Saunooke made me two pairs of beautiful moccasins, Johnny Ruth and Poss Maney made me two beautiful wool outfits, Karen George is making me belts and leggings to match my outfits. I ordered silver jewelry and also placed an order for a new basket. I had a sash made and also shirts and a jacket embroidered with my name and Miss Cherokee 2011.
On Jan. 24, I accompanied the Warriors of Anikituwah in performing traditional Cherokee dances at the Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Event Center for the Chief of Police Conference. I really enjoyed it. Teen Miss Cherokee 2010 was also in attendance because the warriors wanted to perform an honor ceremony for her.
February has been a very fun, interesting, and educational month for me. I attended a School Health Advisory Council meeting on Feb. 9, in which various school health issues were discussed. I look forward to attending future meetings because Cherokee students’ health and concerns are very important.
On February 13-16, I had the opportunity to attend the United South and Eastern Tribes Conference in Washington, D.C. It was an honor and privilege to be given the chance to address the leaders of 26 tribes during the opening ceremony on behalf of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians. I was also asked to say the opening prayer on two separate occasions.
I would like to thank Jeremy Hyatt with the Chief’s office for taking care of me and keeping me up with scheduling that allowed me to make very important appearances with the Chief and other tribal leaders. I had the pleasure of meeting with the Peace Corps Director Aaron Williams and other Peace Corps officials. I also met Patricia Parker, Tribal Liaison, National Parks Service. We took a trip to Capitol Hill where I met Senator Kay Hagan (D-NC), Congressman Heath Shuler (D-NC), Congressman Jeff Denham (R-CA), and Congressman Ben Ray Lujan (D-NM). I really enjoyed my trip to Washington, D.C. and definitely learned a lot.
I am planning on making appearances at the Cherokee Elementary School with the manager of the Cherokee Children’s Dental Program, Mellie Burns. Strong, healthy, beautiful smiles are very important and I am excited about the opportunity to go with Mellie to educate the children about dental health.
It is never too early to start preparing to compete for the title of Miss Cherokee 2012. Any young ladies that are interested in competing should feel free to contact me if you have any questions. My reign as Miss Cherokee has been a wonderful experience and I encourage all eligible young ladies to go for it!
God has continued to bless me throughout my reign and I am very thankful. I’m excited to see what’s in store for me next. Thank you all for the prayers and support. May God continue to bless the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians.
I would also like to add that anyone wishing to invite me to an event, please contact Jean Bushyhead at 828-736-4022.
May God bless you all.