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The Native American Student Association will pay tribute to veterans at its sixth annual Native American Heritage Night on Friday.

The event will include dinner, a musical performance by the Eastern Band Cherokee Northern Drum Group, and a talk by Richard Allen, a military veteran from the Eastern Band of Cherokee. The event is open to the public, but RSVPs are requested.

Brittani Blanchard, president of the Native American Student Association, said she wants attendees of the event to “understand that as a minority, Native Americans play a huge part. They’re a majority of the minorities that serve in the armed forces.”

She says that many people know about Native American code talkers during World War II, but that’s only one of the many contributions that Native Americans have made to the United States military.

Members of the Native American Student Association will be at the event to answer questions about Native American life and culture. The group includes members of several tribes including Seminole, Eastern Band of Cherokee, Navajo, Lumbee, and Monacan.

The event will be at 6:30 p.m. in the University Center Ballroom. Some spots are still open. To attend the event, e-mail