Byline: Morgan Taylor/ MM
Shayln Proctor/ MM Reporter
OKMULGEE, Okla. – The Muscogee (Creek) Nation Spring Celebration has returned to an in-person event for the first time in four years with an unexpected turnout at the Claude Cox Omniplex on May 23.
The event is hosted by the Mvskoke Tribal Child and Youth Coalition, which includes several departments such as MCN Behavioral Health, Tribal TANF Youth Services, and other agencies.
The TCYC’s mission is to keep families together, provide a stable and safe environment, and promote family bonding.
According to MCN Behavioral Health Project Director for Native Connections Grant Coordinator Tyler Stone, he was happy with the unexpected turnout.
MCN Behavioral Health and Event Coordinator Jasmine Jack claimed that participation had reached half of the projected number of 1,000 in just 30 minutes.
Participants were provided a resource fair, free haircuts, 3-on-3 basketball, face painting, inflatables, door prizes and cultural activities like basket weaving, small pottery, corn husk doll making lessons, stick ball demonstration and lunch.
They incorporated activities for every age group to be able to join in on the fun.
There were physical activities for the children to do whether it was jumping on the inflatables, playing stickball, jamming out to the music that the disc jockey played or playing with their friends.
Numerous resource booths not only included information about programs and some offered tips for emotional well being.
Local vendors with departments from the Muscogee Nation included the MCN Center for Victim Services, Department of Health, College of the Muscogee Nation, Reintegration Program, Food Distribution, Mvskoke Language Program, Tobacco Prevention, Youth Services, TANF, Tax Commission, and many more. Some were even non-Muscogee to help broaden the services.
“Whenever we reach out to different vendors, we want to make sure that there are resources that kind of tackle that entire lifespan,” Stone said
McIntosh District Representative Galen Cloud was asked to emcee the event.
“I am overwhelmed with all the kids that we have,” Cloud said about the turnout.
For Cloud, seeing the kids participate in the different cultural activities is of high importance.
“For them to be out here, to take away something that’s Mvskoke, that’s very important to me,” Cloud said.
Stone mentioned that they wanted to bring in the Mvskoke cultural aspect to give citizens that “spiritual connection.”
“The culture is the protective factor,” Stone said.
Stone stated that these different dimensions of health tying together with all of the different events that were provided was what they were wanting to provide the citizens.
For more information about the different services the Muscogee Nation has to offer visit www.muscogeenation.com.