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Grand Casino to host 34th annual Red Earth Festival

Elisabeth Slay
The Shawnee News-Star
Bracelets made by Caddo artist Yonavea Hawkins from Choctaw.

Shawnee community members and surrounding areas will gather for Native American art, diversity and culture at the 34th annual Red Earth Festival at the Grand Casino Hotel Resort Sept. 5 from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sept. 6 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

According to Red Earth Communications Director Eric Oesch, for the past 33 years various Native artists from all over Oklahoma and the country have participated in this event.

“Shawnee will be at the center of western and Native art as central Oklahoma celebrates the Native cultures that make our state unique,” Oesch said.

Oesch said attendees will be able to view all kinds of art and shop in the Festival Art art market for many different items.

While Red Dirt is having their festival, Oesch said there will be various safety measures implemented to protect attendees from spreading and contracting COVID-19.  

“The Grand Casino Hotel Resort will provide manual temperature checks upon entry and require masks be worn throughout the property,” Oesch said. “Hand sanitizer stations are located throughout the building, while all employees wear masks and gloves.”

In addition, Oesch said special attention will be given to the Festival Art Market to ensure social distancing and the Grand Casino has an air filtration system that untilates and treats the air every eight minutes. 

Oesch said this year’s festival will not include a powwow due to COVID-19, but Red Earth hopes to have the powwow presentation in 2021. 

“In the meantime, we will offer beautiful Native dance presentations featuring the colorful dances our guests have grown accustomed to seeing,” Oesch said. “The shows will be offered on the hour during limited attendance presentations.”

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