The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

Local news

September 11, 2011

Cherokee Strip Days begins Thursday

ENID — The 2011 observance of the Cherokee Strip Days Celebration, commemorating the largest land run in history, will be held Thursday through Saturday.

This year’s theme for the festival commemorating the Land Run of 1893 is “Songs of the Strip,” which highlights the area’s diverse musical heritage.

The annual parade begins at 10 a.m. Saturday. Parade entries still are being accepted, and applications may be obtained at the Greater Enid Chamber of Commerce or downloaded at www.enidchamber.com under “Events and Programs.”

Internationally renowned opera singer Leona Mitchell, a native of Enid, will be parade marshal, and cash prizes will be awarded to the best commercial and non-profit floats, said Megan Wagner, Enid Chamber of Commerce membership and special events director. The parade also will feature a herd of Longhorn cattle.

“After the parade, there will be entertainment from the Crooked Canyon Band, the Oklahoma Kid and the Marlow Gunfighters,” Wagner said. “We are excited to have the longhorns, the kids’ bike parade and the trick roper of the year.”

Arts and crafts, food vendors, pony rides and face-painting also will be available after the parade. The celebration begins Thursday with lunch on the courthouse lawn, provided by Sister’s Cupboard, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. On Friday, Enid Intertribal Club will serve Indian tacos on the lawn from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

The annual Continental Resources Great Land Run will be held Saturday. The 5K walk/run and the 10K run start at 7:30 a.m., and the Be Fit Kids Run begins at 8:30 a.m.

Starting at 6:30 p.m. Saturday, a free family concert featuring Brent Price with the Enid Symphony Orchestra and a special showing of the movie “Oklahoma” will be held at Enid Symphony Hall, 301 W. Broadway. The movie will be shown at the symphony center after the performance, said Douglas Newel, symphony executive director.

The performance is presented by the Harris Foundation and the Oklahoma Arts Council with assistance from the National Endowment for the Arts.

Cherokee Strip Days is a time when Enid area residents celebrate the opening of the strip, and no place has more information about Enid’s history than the Cherokee Strip Regional Heritage Center.

In addition, Cherokee Strip Regional Heritage Center will host a Frontier Festival 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday at Humphrey Heritage Village. Museum officials began working on the Frontier Festival in March.

As part of the historical re-enactment, visitors may file a claim at the land office, attend Turkey Creek school and complete a daily assignment. The Glidewell House will be open for tours and an inside look at housekeeping chores of the day. Visitors also can spend a moment in the village church and listen to a hymn. Makeshift stores also will offer items used to set up a settlement, and visitors can buy candy or a sarsaparilla at the mercantile. Andi Holland, director of the museum, said the new town could be a little rowdy: Fights could break out, and visitors could be called upon to fight a fire.

Humphrey Heritage Village is a grouping of four historically significant buildings placed around a village green and gazebo on the grounds of the Cherokee Strip Regional Heritage Center. The buildings were rescued and restored by the Sons & Daughters of the Cherokee Strip Association and other volunteers. Bill Humphrey was a major contributor. The buildings include the only remaining 1893 U.S. Land Office, and 1895 one-room schoolhouse, a 1902 church and the 1905 home of the J.W. Glidewell family.

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