NATIVE AMERICAN
HERITAGE MONTH

This November we celebrate the culture and traditions of the Prairie Island Indian Community during Native American Heritage Month! For generations, the Mdewakanton, “those who were born of the waters,” have called Prairie Island home. While building upon the rich tribal heritage we know today, the Tribe continues to make a prominent impact on Prairie Island and the surrounding communities.

Prairie Island Indian Community

Located in Southeastern Minnesota along the wooded shores of the Mississippi and Vermillion Rivers, Prairie Island is a spiritual place for our people. Prairie Island owns and operates Treasure Island Resort & Casino. We call gaming the “new buffalo” because it has helped restore our self-sufficiency. It is responsible for improving life on the reservation, strengthening our Tribal Government and helping preserve our culture. Indian Gaming is what gives our Tribal Government the tools we need to operate our community and provide for our people. But it also has given us a new and welcomed responsibility as an employer to thousands of Minnesotans. We are proud to be Goodhue County’s largest employer and an important contributor to Minnesota’s economy.

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Edwin J. Buck Buffalo Project

In 1992, the Prairie Island Indian Community received a male bison bull from the Lakota Nation of South Dakota, marking the start of the Edwin Buck Jr. Memorial Buffalo Project. The purchase of additional cows one year later helped the project take off. The herd has now expanded, with new calves arriving every spring.

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National Eagle Center

The Prairie Island Indian Community has a strong partnership with the National Eagle Center. The eagle (Wanbdi) is significant to Dakota Communities because he delivers prayers to the Creator. While circling in the sky, eagles gather prayers. Once prayers are collected, the eagles bring them to the Creator. Eagle feathers also hold a special meaning, since they have been in the presence of the Creator. Prairie Island Indian Community member Blake Johnson proudly serves on the National Eagle Center’s Board of Directors, and the Community has donated countless hours and resources to the center over the years.

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Prairie Island Heritage Collection

Check out our Prairie Island Heritage Collection, available at the Island Pearl gift shop. The collection was designed to capture the spirit and legacy of the Prairie Island Indian Community through the use of meaningful Dakota words, colors and many eco-friendly materials. The collection includes clothing, hats, travel mugs, blankets, tote bags and more.