"Unto These Hills"

Since its inception in 1950, “Unto These Hills” has been a summer staple, drawing more than 6 million visitors. The Sylva Herald described its premiere thusly: “The drama, though interrupted for a brief period by rain, kept the audience attentive with the splendor of the extraordinary lighting effects. The Indian dances, folk dances, native scenery and the stirring music written by a Cherokee and sung by the choir with organ accompaniment, all blended to give vivid excitement to the play.”

The Cherokee Historical Association released a statement Monday about the 2020 seasons of “Unto These Hills” and the Oconaluftee Indian Village.

“It is with a heavy heart that we send this note to you concerning our 2020 season,” the statement reads. “After watching the news, reading everything we can get our hands on, and speaking with the tribal leaders about preparing and opening the show, our board and staff has determined that producing ‘Unto These Hills’ in 2020 is too much of a risk for our company members, community and patrons.”

The CHA has been working over the past few weeks in hopes that a season would be possible, but after reviewing plans it became apparent that there was no way to guarantee everyone’s safety, they said.

The Oconaluftee Indian Village will open in June.

CHA staff will be in the office from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. over the coming weeks to answer questions about the future of “Unto These Hills,” refunds and exchanges. Call 497-2111 or email groupsandtouring@cherokeeadventure.com to discuss a refund or exchange for next summer.