Red Lake Nation to Receive $27 Million Shakopee Mdewakanton Loan for Casino
Additional $1.5 million in grants for community center
Prior Lake, Minn. – The Red Lake Nation will fund a new casino and hotel with a $27 million loan from the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community (SMSC). The SMSC will also give two separate $750,000 grants to Red Lake in fiscal years 2013 and 2014 for a new Little Rock Community Center. The $1.5 million in grants to Red Lake are part of the SMSC’s most recent round of more than $10 million in grants awarded to 18 American Indian tribes in eight states.
Seven Clans Casino
The $27 million loan – the SMSC’s third loan to Red Lake in recent years – will fund a new Seven Clans Casino to be built near the existing casino on the banks of Lake of the Woods in Warroad, Minnesota. It will consist of a casino floor with 600 slot machines, a snack bar, and a full-service restaurant overlooking the lake with indoor and outdoor seating for 150 patrons. The casino will also have a 60-room hotel, an exercise room, meeting rooms, a gift shop, and office space for casino management staff. A groundbreaking was held in late 2012, and the casino is scheduled to open in June 2014. A boat launch and floating dock will be moved from the existing casino to the new casino.
Future phases of the project include a pool, an event center suitable for banquets and large meetings, another hotel tower, additional parking spaces for boaters, and resort cabins.
“We’re going to provide about 100 new jobs for tribal and non-tribal members in the Warroad area,” said Ray Brenny, CEO of Red Lake Gaming. “We will have a state-of-the-art gaming floor and oversized hotel rooms with many amenities to choose from. Our longstanding relationship with the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community has allowed us to create additional jobs and help improve our Red Lake economy.”
A portion of the loan will also fund a new slot machine system and repairs to the Red Lake Humanities Center. The Red Lake tribal government is putting equity into the new casino.
Little Rock Community Center Project
The SMSC will also fund two $750,000 grants to Red Lake, with the first in fiscal year 2013 and the second in fiscal year 2014 for a new Little Rock Community Center, which will be called Sakate Hall. One of Red Lake’s four reservation communities, Little Rock is located about five miles west of the town of Red Lake. Sakate Hall will be built behind the current Little Rock Community Center, which was built in 1969 and will remain in use.
The new facility will be used for wakes, funerals, youth sports, after-school programs, and language and cultural events. The first phase of construction, estimated at $2 million, will include a gymnasium, men’s and women’s locker rooms, gym storage, and office space. The second phase, estimated at $600,000, will include a kitchen, meeting space, additional bathrooms, and a storage area.
“The support we have received from the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community in the past has truly resonated through the whole Red Lake Community, improving the quality of lives for many,” wrote Chairman Floyd “Buck” Jourdain Jr. in the grant request letter to the SMSC.
The Red Lake Reservation, which consists of 1,259 square miles in northwestern Minnesota, has a population of more than 10,000 people – 99% of whom are Ojibwe.
The SMSC has funded numerous projects benefitting the Red Lake Nation in recent years. Last year a $750,000 grant to Red Lake funded a skateboard park, basketball court, and amenities at the Ponemah Community Center. In fiscal year 2010 the SMSC funded a number of economic enterprises, as well as a health care center and a youth center with a $3 million loan and a $1 million grant. In fiscal year 2009 the SMSC made a loan for $31 million to Red Lake to fund construction of a new Seven Clans Casino and Hotel in the town of Red Lake, a tribal law enforcement center, and a greenhouse. In fiscal years 2007-2009 the SMSC made $3 million in grants for the tribal fishery. Other SMSC grants to the Red Lake Band include $500,000 for the St. Mary’s School and $200,000 for a family advocacy center.
About the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community
The Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community is a federally recognized, sovereign Indian tribe located southwest of Minneapolis/St. Paul. With a focus on being a good neighbor, good steward of the earth, and good employer, the SMSC is committed to community partnerships, charitable donations, a healthy environment, and a strong economy. The SMSC and the SMSC Gaming Enterprise (Mystic Lake Casino Hotel and Little Six Casino) are the largest employer in Scott County. Out of a Dakota tradition to help others, the SMSC has also donated nearly $272 million since 1992, including more than $152 million to other tribes, tribal organizations, and American Indian causes.