HistoryDuring the Labor Day weekend, Choctaws from around the country travel to Tvshka Homma, the Choctaw Nation’s beautiful capitol grounds, for a weekend-long gathering to celebrate faith, family and culture. The Choctaw Nation Labor Day Festival has been a decades-long tradition for the Choctaw people and attracts thousands yearly.
Born at Tvshka Homma
The annual meeting originally began as a chance to listen to the Chief speak and conduct tribal business. One of the earliest instances of the festival’s origin was a letter documenting interest in the first Choctaw Princess being selected in 1969. In its beginning, the gatherings were small compared to today. The tribal grounds were very different, with only the Capital Building, a tabernacle, and spaces for outdoor cooking and meals.
Traditions Old and New
Things look much different today with softball and stickball fields, a state-of-the-art musical amphitheater, a cafeteria and an arts and crafts building. From the princess pageant, tournaments such as stickball, softball, basketball and volleyball, cultural events, musical events and health events, the Choctaw Nation Labor Day Festival has something for everyone.
The Chahta Spirit Continues
For the first time in many years, in 2020 and 2021, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma’s leaders made the tough but necessary decision to cancel the Labor Day Festival. In place of an in-person gathering, Chief Batton delivered his annual State of the Nation Address via video message. The festival was again able to take place in 2022, and attendees seemed very happy to be back at Tvshka Homma, participating again in the regular festival activities. The Choctaw Nation Labor Day Festival is a tradition among the Choctaw people and one that is looked forward to each year.