Eastern Band of Cheorkee Indians


The Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians has approved growing, selling and using medical marijuana on its lands in Western North Carolina, tribal leaders announced Thursday.

Courtesy of Western Carolina University

During Western Carolina University’s commencement ceremony, the university recognized the history of the Cherokee with an official land acknowledgement for the first time.

Courtesy of Gas Buddy

Colonial Pipeline announced Thursday morning that fuel deliveries should be made by the end of the day. The pipeline restarted operations on Wednesday night after being out of service since a cyber-attack caused a shutdown.  

Matt Bush

The Eastern Band of Cherokee tribal council voted Thursday to decriminalize up to an ounce of marijuana on the Qualla Boundary. It is still illegal to sell or use the substance in public. It was incorrectly reported by other outlets that the Eastern Band legalized medical marijuana.

Joey Owle is Secretary of Agriculture and Natural Resources for the Eastern Band.  

Courtesy of Principal Chief Richard Sneed's Office

"No More Stolen Sisters."

That’s what the banner outside of the Eastern Band of Cherokee’s council house reads today in honor of the national day of awareness for murdered and missing indigenous women.

A federal judge on Friday rejected a legal challenge by the operator of North Carolina's two casinos, saying that the tribe had no grounds to oppose a competitor's plans for a third gambling operation in the state.

Lilly Knoepp

The candidates for the Eastern Band of Cherokee’s Tribal Council elections have been finalized. The full list was published from the EBCI Elections board on Thursday by the Cherokee One Feather. All 12 seats – two for each township – are up for election. The primary election will be held at the beginning of June.

Matt Bush

Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland served her first full day in the cabinet today.

Emma Johnson

Climate change has been wreaking havoc on Western North Carolina's famed trout industry.  Specifically, rising sustained temperatures are slowly eliminating the cold water in lakes trout need to thrive.  While climate change continues to impact trout, the COVID-19 pandemic is too.

North Carolina, Catawba Tribe Ink Casino Revenue Agreement

Jan 25, 2021
Catawba Indian Nation

North Carolina’s governor has signed a revenue-sharing agreement with the Catawba Indian Nation that clears the way for Las Vegas-style gaming to be offered at a planned resort in Kings Mountain, officials said.

Steve Harrison / WFAE

The town of Cherokee in western North Carolina has about 2,000 people. There are a few strips malls, a museum dedicated to the history of the tribe.

And there’s a casino. It’s a really big casino that’s getting bigger.

courtesy of the author

In the late 1990s, so few students from Smoky Mountain High School in Sylva moved on to Ivy League colleges that even the school’s secretary seemed baffled to learn Annette Clapsaddle earned acceptance to one. That’s how Clapsaddle remembers it, after taking a phone call in the front office from her mom, telling her about the news.

“I got off the phone and the secretary looked at me and said ‘What was that about?’ and I told her and she said ‘Are you playing basketball there?’ and I said ‘No,’ and she was like ‘Oh,’ Clapsaddle recalled. “And that’s all she said, like, if you’re not playing sports, oh well.”

Matt Bush / Blue Ridge Public Radio

The Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians (EBCI) has amended its federal lawsuit which hopes to block the Catawaba Nation, based in South Carolina, from building a casino near Charlotte.

Matt Bush

Both Harrah’s Cherokee Casinos opened at 30 percent capacity Thursday morning.

When Chief Richard Sneed of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians talks about the tribe’s yearly budget - he’s also talking about the revenue of Harrah’s Cherokee Casinos.  


“I don't think that most of our citizens have given much thought to the fact of how everything is tied to gaming revenue,” says Sneed.