The Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community is a federally recognized, sovereign Dakota tribal government located southwest of Minneapolis/St. Paul. Following a Dakota tradition of generosity, the SMSC is one of the top philanthropists in Minnesota and is the largest contributor to other tribal governments and causes across the country. It is a strong community partner and a leader in protecting and restoring natural resources. The SMSC’s government, Gaming Enterprise and various other enterprises are collectively the largest employer in Scott County and attract millions of visitors to the region.
2330 Sioux Trail NW
Prior Lake, Minnesota 55372
Charles R. Vig, Chairman, current Business Council term: 2016-2019
The SMSC is governed by the General Council and the Business Council. The highest governing body of the SMSC is the General Council, which consists of all enrolled members of the tribe aged 18 and older. The General Council meets bi-monthly to discuss important issues, make decisions, and set policies. General Council members are also tasked with electing representatives to the Business Council, Gaming Commission, and Gaming Board of Directors. Every four years, the General Council elects three members to the Business Council: The Chairman, Vice-Chairman, and Secretary/Treasurer. Business Council members are responsible for running the day-to-day operations of the tribe and for implementing the decisions of the General Council. The Business Council is charged with promoting the health, education, and welfare of SMSC Members and their families now and for generations to come. They also make decisions that shape the SMSC's role as a leading employer, Native American nation, and member of the greater community. Every four years the Business Council publishes a report describing the activities of the last four years.
Angie Craig, DFL, District 2, 2018-2020
Mystic Lake Casino Hotel includes three first-class hotel towers, 150,000 square feet of casino and bingo space, seven destination restaurants, and meeting and banquet spaces. The casino also hosts internationally recognized music, entertainment, and comedy acts at its showroom, ballroom, comedy club, amphitheater, and Mystic Lake Center.
Phone: (952) 445-9000
The Meadows at Mystic Lake is an 18-hole public golf course that is consistently voted one of Golfweek's best courses in Minnesota. Covering 7,144 yards from the back tees on 160 acres, the course has 13 holes with water features, including 20 fountains and a 2,500-foot cascading stream with 7 waterfalls winding through the middle of the golf course.
Phone: (952) 233-5533
Dakotah! Sport and Fitness is a full-service health club, featuring an aquatic center, cardio room, gymnasium, ice center, running/walking track, strength training area, and bowling.
Personal training sessions and fitness classes are also available at this Prior Lake gym. Dakotah! Sport and Fitness serves Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community Members, employees, and the public.
Phone: (952) 445-9400
The Minnesota River Valley had been home to the Dakota for hundreds of years when European-American settlers migrated into their territory in the 1800s. The era of settlement in Minnesota was accompanied by the United States forcing the Dakota to cede land, diminishing their homeland and their ability to continue their traditional way of life. Unable to hunt, fish and gather resources adequately, the Dakota were forced to depend increasingly on the federal government's promises and provisions.
After the U.S. government negotiated a variety of treaties with Native American people, the Dakota lost millions of acres of land for little compensation, eventually surrendering all lands east of the Mississippi River. The Minnesota Territory was created in 1849, and within two years, all remaining Dakota land was in federal hands. During this time, the Dakota were forced onto reservations and struggled to survive. In 1886, the U.S. government purchased land for the Mdewakanton, including land in the Prior Lake area.
The federal government granted the SMSC official recognition as a Native American tribe on November 28, 1969. The first SMSC Chairman, Norman M. Crooks, was elected. In 1982 the tribe opened Little Six Bingo Palace (later Little Six Casino) after Indian gaming was allowed on reservation lands in states that had gaming laws. In 1992 it opened Mystic Lake Casino. These enterprises have generated revenues that the tribe has invested in other economic development, tribal welfare, and philanthropy.