By ROBERT JUMPER
ONE FEATHER EDITOR
Gourd enthusiasts have been attending the annual gourd festival since its inception approximately 12 years ago. For several years, the Gourd Festival producers have chosen Cherokee as their location for this event.
The theme for this year’s event is “Paws for Gourds”. Last year, the Cherokee Gourd Artist Gathering drew nearly 1,500 attendees interested in all things gourd. Many people came to refill their supplies and by equipment. Attending the gathering this year are 22 supply/equipment vendors and 24 teachers.
There are 88 different classes to sign up for if you wish to learn a particular gourd craft. Classes and vending are open to the public. Some after-hours events are scheduled for the crafters only.
The Gathering is at the Cherokee Indian Fairgrounds and is admission free (classes are fee-based). Food is available at the event through Lulu’s Food Wagon (an EBCI-tribal member owned business), Glazed Almonds and Pecans, and The Gourd Eats Café. You may see a schedule of events for the Cherokee Gourd Artist Gathering and get more information about the crafters at www.gourdgathering.net.