Per Don Rhodes, Editor, The Morris Communicator – About five years ago, the former Augusta mayor, Bob Young met with me to see how he could get more visitors to the Phinizy Swamp nature site. I suggested a music festival that incorporated native American lore. I then hooked up Bob and me and Okefenokee Joe over lunch to talk about it, and Joe ended up bringing in Chipa to be the organizer. He was such a joy to know over the past four or five years and he leaves behind a lot of friends in Augusta and North Augusta who really loved him and respected him.
Here is an article I did that was printed in today’s edition of The Augusta Chronicle and took up about a third on one of the obituary pages. Prayers are going out to Chipa’s family and friends in their time of sorrow.
Chipa Wolfe, organizer of Oka’Chaffa Indian Festival, dies at 62
Chipa Lone Eagle Wolfe, 62, of Jasper, Ga., died Saturday at his residence.
There are no local services scheduled.
For the past four years, Wolfe was the organizer and host of the Oka’Chaffa Indian Festival & Pow Wow each fall.
It was held for two years at Phinizy Swamp Nature Park and then moved to New Savannah Bluff Lock & Dam Park north of Augusta Regional Airport.
More than 7,000 people attending the festival each year found Native American dances, colorful authentic costumes, tribal chants and drum beatings, native foods, a living Tipi village and a buffalo named Thunder.
Wolfe co-founded the festival in 2012 with naturalist Okefenokee Joe (also known as country songwriter and recording artist Dick Flood) and former Augusta Mayor Bob Young.
“We are really excited about creating this festival in Augusta,” Wolfe said just before the first one. “This will be a fun weekend for Augusta-area residents to learn about the people who lived here before Gen. (James Edward) Oglethorpe and all the other folks came here. We hope our visitors leave with a better understanding of the diversity and rich ties with local native peoples that were here not that long ago.”
Last July, Wolfe helped the North Augusta Arts & Heritage Center celebrate its sixth anniversary with Native American music, dances and his educational stories.
Last October, he was back at New Savannah Bluff Lock & Dam Park as host of the fourth annual Oka’Chaffa Indian Festival & Pow Wow. The future of the festival remains in limbo because Wolfe was the spark plug who made it happen.
Part-Cherokee, Wolfe has been putting on powwows and Indian festivals for 20 years with his Rolling Thunder Enterprises.
He has served as the emcee of his festivals and kept spectators entertained with his stories of Native American life and the many native peoples through centuries who served in America’s military forces, including the Navajo Code Talkers.
Wolfe also was the founder of the Cherokee County Indian Festival. His obituary noted that he enjoyed riding horses and motorcycles, catching snakes, riding bulls and rescuing animals.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Bob Mincey and Jackie Peters. Survivors include his wife, Ruby Wolfe; his father figure, Larry Giles; children, Joshua A. Krumnaker and Cecilia W.R. Wolf; sister, Cherokee Rose Haider; brothers, Mike Satterfield and Butch Satterfield; a niece; a nephew; and one grandchild.