POSTED ON AUGUST 10, 2011:
Revived. The Cherokee Nation officially began operating the Oklahoma Welcome Center in east Tulsa on Aug. 2. Officials with the Cherokee Nation and Oklahoma Tourism and Recreation Department marked the new partnership with a special ceremony. Now called the Cherokee Nation Welcome Center, the facility is located at I-44 and 161st E. Ave.
Cherokee Nation Welcome Center.
The 4,200 square foot center was in danger of being closed due to state budget cuts at the Oklahoma Tourism and Recreation Department. An agreement between the state and the Cherokee Nation was reached that transfers daily operations to the tribe, which will continue to promote both Cherokee and Oklahoma tourist destinations in the area.
The Cherokee Nation Welcome Center will house an information desk, tourist destination information, maps, snacks and a gift shop featuring Oklahoma related merchandise along with Cherokee Nation art, jewelry and apparel.
The Cherokee Nation Welcome Center in Tulsa is the second welcome center partnership between the Cherokee Nation and the Oklahoma Tourism and Recreation Department. In 2010, the first Oklahoma-turned-Cherokee Nation Welcome Center opened in Kansas.
The Cherokee Nation Welcome Center in Tulsa is open daily from 9am-6pm. Call 918-384-5987 for more information.
Going Strong. The historic Mount Zion Baptist Church, 419 N. Elgin, will celebrate its 102nd Anniversary on August 21. The anniversary celebration started on August 3 with "Mount Zion's Night Out with the Spirit". Sunday, August 14, at 10:45am the church will celebrate its Silver Saints, members 75 years old and older, with a special presentation. Sunday, August 21, 2011 the 102nd Anniversary Service at 10:45am will be lead by Reverend Donald Dumas of Dean's Chapel in Muskogee, Oklahoma.
Friday August 26, at 7pm the church will celebrate the children, and youth of the church with performance by Mime Ministry, RIZE Youth Voice Ministry, Envision Dance Ministry, Ambassadors for Christ and Children's Church. All of these events are free and open to the public. Saturday, August 27 the church will host the Charles H. Lewis Golf Tournament at the Bailey Ranch in Owasso, Oklahoma. This is a paid event.
Mount Zion was founded in 1909 and was burned to the ground in 1921 doing the Tulsa Race Riot. Under the leadership of Reverend JH Dotson, it built its current structure and became a foundation of the community. Dr. G. Calvin McCutchen, Sr. served for 50 years as pastor and became pastor emeritus in 2008. The church became a part of the National and State Historical Register in 2008. Visit mtzionbc.org for more information.
Lucky Learners. The Desk and Derrick Club of Tulsa has announced sponsorship of its 15th annual Energy Essay Contest for all public, private and home-schooled middle school students, grades 6-8, within Tulsa County and the surrounding area. The essay topic for 2011 is "The Impact of the Oil and Natural Gas Industry in Oklahoma."
The contest encourages students to improve their writing and researching skills while learning more about the vital role the energy industry plays in their lives. A total of $1,865 in cash prizes will be awarded to the student authors and their sponsoring teachers of the top ten essays, including first place awards of $500/$250 respectively. Contest entries must be postmarked by October 28. The full contest rules and official entry form are available at tulsadandd.net.
Year Round. Gilcrease Elementary School is now a Tulsa Public Schools Continuous Learning Calendar (CLC) school. The board of education voted Monday night to approve the school's request to become a CLC school.
Gilcrease has been restructured as an elementary school as part of Project Schoolhouse. Students will be required to wear uniforms, which will include white tops and khaki bottoms.
Classes for CLC schools began on Thursday, August 4. Schools on the CLC are in session for the same number of instructional days as traditional schools. Schools on the traditional calendar commence August 22.
Better than Ever. In an effort to improve the health of Oklahomans, the Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH) launched two new programs designed to enhance health and wellness activities provided through schools and local communities.
The "Certified Healthy Schools" and "Certified Healthy Communities" programs will provide opportunities for schools and communities to achieve certification in activities they provide to Oklahomans to improve their health and the health of others. The programs will build upon the Certified Healthy Businesses initiative, an innovative public-private partnership that recognizes workplaces that provide healthy living options for their employees. More than 900 businesses now participate in this program. In 2010, the Oklahoma Legislature passed HB2774, authored by State Rep. Kris Steele, which expanded the program to include "Certified Healthy Schools" and "Certified Healthy Communities".
Application criteria for schools seeking to become a Certified Healthy School include demonstrating the availability of health education, physical education, health services and more. Application criteria for communities seeking to become a Certified Healthy Community include addressing such issues as tobacco and alcohol use prevention, improving nutrition and physical activity, addressing built environments and transportation, health services, and community education offered within a community site.
Criteria details and application information for both "Certified Healthy Schools" and "Certified Healthy Communities" are available at okturningpoint.org. Each program has three levels of certification: Basic, Merit and Excellence. Applications must be submitted by Nov. 1 for certification consideration and recognition at a special ceremony scheduled in Oklahoma City in March 2012.
For more information about any of the Certified Healthy Oklahoma programs, contact Whitney Kemp, OSDH Community Development Services, 405-271-9444, ext. 56433.
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