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The wood smoke drifting on the breeze isn’t like any you’ve smelled before. It’s not the pure tang of hardwood burned for heat. Nor is it the aroma of a cooking fire, fragrant with baking bread or bubbling broth or roasting meat. There’s something earthy about this fire, because it’s smoldering pitch pine, firing local Cherokee clay into gleaming blackware pottery. Then again, all the sights, sounds, and scents surrounding you today are novel.
We welcome you to our Village. Here the year is 1750, and just inside the stockade wall is a living, working village where Cherokee men and women are making traditional trades, participate in dances and governmental affairs. Your Cherokee guide will lead you along the pathways throughout the village to the homes of our villagers, to visit the village Council House, the heart of the village and government, and to the village Square Grounds where you will learn more about traditional dance and ceremony. After your tour, you are free to visit our Botanical Gardens, located above the Ticket Office.
We make the following recommendations for School Groups:
- Divide your class or group into smaller groups of 15-20 students
- There should be at least 1 Adult Chaperone for every smaller group
- Share the ‘Rules for My Visit to Oconaluftee Indian Village’ with your class, it would be ideal for each of your group leaders to have a copy
- Share this information with your class prior to arriving at the Village and have your groups established well in advance
- We have a store that is full of gifts and other souvenirs that you will encounter upon exit as well as a new concession with snacks and drinks. We encourage everyone to bring a few dollars to take home a cool memory.
Rules for My Visit to Oconaluftee Indian Village
- Always stay with your assigned group and group leader
- Stay on the pathways at all times
- Be respectful of everyone inside the Village, including other Guests. This means:
- Maintain a quiet noise level
- No running or horseplay inside the Village
- Listen carefully when a Villager is talking
- No cell phones – unless for emergency.
- Please respect all structures and demonstration exhibits while touring our Village and Gardens.