Looking forward to Labor Day improvements and additions
From the desk of Chief Gregory E. Pyle
Each year I look forward to the Choctaw Labor Day Festival for many reasons, and it is always exciting to explore the changes and additions to the grounds. Thankfully, there are new shade awnings at the ball field for basketball, horseshoes and fast-pitch, which in this 100+ degree weather will be absolutely necessary.
For the first time ever, a stickball tournament is being held at our festival – and because it is so hot, our players will begin the tournament at 8:30 p.m. on Friday and Saturday nights. The games are expected to last late into the night.
The amphitheater has received a facelift, giving it more beauty and efficiency. The concerts are always a huge draw for our guests, so I am sure we will have a lot of people enjoy the improvements in this area.
A change in our health division has spearheaded the Going Lean program, which will be obvious in the large Healthy Lifestyles tent beside the Council Chambers. This year, visitors will enjoy interactive education in the tent and healthy snacks of fruit. The long-term vision of the Choctaw Nation is “To achieve healthy, successful, productive and self-sufficient lifestyles for a proud Nation of Choctaws,” and the Going Lean program is a tremendous effort by the tribal health division to promote healthier lives for all of us.
One goal of the Healthy Lifestyles tent is to promote ways to not only keep people living longer, but also keep us feeling better so we WANT to live and have a better quality of life.
I am told that vendors at the festival are offering more than just the ordinary fair food this year. There are going to be some healthy choices available, as well. That sounds good to me. The Healthy Lifestyles tent will have a list of vendors offering these healthier food options on their menus.
Please be safe as you travel to the festival and enjoy the activities this year. This has been the hottest summer on record in our Choctaw Nation counties in Oklahoma, and we may still be experiencing those record-breaking temperatures, so please be careful!