TAHLEQUAH, Okla. — Cherokee Heritage Center announced today the postponement of its planned reopening this week. Operations were temporarily suspended mid-March due to the COVID-19 health crisis and were slated to resume Sept. 18.

Prior to reopening, a team member tested positive for COVID-19.

“Our team has been working hard to reopen to the public and bring back the same authentic, immersive experience our guests have come to appreciate,” said Paul Buckner, interim executive director for CHC. “While we’re eager to welcome back our guests and get back to doing what we love, our first priority is and always will be the health and safety of our team members and guests.”

CHC is working closely with health and tribal officials. Following an evaluation from the Public Health Contact Tracing team, it was determined that there was no risk of exposure to other team members due to the current mask policy and potential exposure time.

The heritage center has opted to temporarily postpone its public reopening out of an abundance of caution to allow for additional testing and to thoroughly sanitize the facility, ensuring the safety of its team members and guests. A reopening date has not been set at this time.