DEWEY, OK – Cherokee Nation leaders met with nearly 300 community members and leaders of the Cherokee Cultural Community organization to celebrate the opening of a new 9,500 sq. ft. community building. The new facility will provide the community with a place to learn about Cherokee culture and language and host family activities. The building also provides future opportunities for Cherokee Nation programs and services to be available to Cherokee citizens in the area.
“Deputy Chief Bryan Warner and I know the importance of community, and we ought to ensure that Cherokee communities are strong and have the resources to do what they do best, which is to take care of each other,” said Principal Chief Chuck Hoskin Jr. “Wado to the leadership of Councilor Dora Patzkowski and members of the Dewey community who made this possible. The local Cherokee community organization, Cherokee Cultural Community, is so impressive and will make this facility a vital hub of Cherokee life in the area.”
The Cherokee Nation purchased and rehabilitated the building under the Housing, Jobs & Sustainable Communities Act signed into law by Chief Hoskin in 2019. The Act initially set aside $30 million for housing projects and for improving communities through grassroots efforts. In 2022, the Act was amended to provide an additional $120 million toward housing and community efforts across the Cherokee Nation.
“The turnout during the grand opening of this facility – standing-room only – shows just how important it is to our community to have a place where we can fellowship together as Cherokees,” said Councilor Patzkowski. “I am so proud of the Cherokee Cultural Community organization and of all the work that has been done to turn this into an amazing hub. It couldn’t have been done without the support of Chief Hoskin and Deputy Chief Warner and the Council of the Cherokee Nation.”
The Cherokee Cultural Community is a participating organization of the Cherokee Nation’s Community & Cultural Outreach. The Dewey community building is being leased to the organization, which is standard practice for community centers owned by the Cherokee Nation across the reservation.
“The Cherokee Cultural Community is the meaning of Gadugi; working together and helping others,” said Cherokee Cultural Community President Monty Layton. “This is the door to Cherokee Nation culture, education and services. This building will provide the place and opportunity for everyone in the Cherokee Nation to experience a super nice facility to gather for fellowship, education and fun times. We are so thankful for our new facilities and are super excited to get started.”