Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana Welcomes United Southern & Eastern Tribes to the 2023 Tribal Utility Finance Forum

USET hosts a Tribal Utility Finance Form at Paragon Casino Resort May 16 – 17

The Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana will host the United South & Eastern Tribes (USET) annual Tribal Utility Finance Form (TUFF) on May 16 – 17 from 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. at Paragon Casino Resort to discuss Tribal Nation funding and utility access. USET is a non-profit organization dedicated to enhancing the federally recognized Indian tribes in the southern and eastern portions of the United States. 

“Because of our dedication to one another, we come together to connect with our ancestral roots and focus on bettering Indian Country,” said Marshall Pierite, Chairman of the Tunica Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana, which owns Paragon Casino Resort. “We are grateful for the opportunity to host this national-scale forum and welcome various tribal communities to our homelands in Avoyelles Parish. Hopefully, all attendees will gain valuable insight into the history of our Tribe from their stay.”

Topics of the annual forum, including workforce retention, funding opportunities, cyber security and budgeting and planning, will be highlighted throughout TUFF. All USET Tribal Utility supervisors, managers, finance, planners and economic development staff members are encouraged to attend either in-person or virtually through the Attendee Website. Those interested in registering can RSVP here, and reservations through the Paragon Casino Resort can be booked by calling (800) 642-7777.


Hit for Hope Golf Tournament to Return to Paragon Casino Resort This Summer

United Way of Central Louisiana, Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana and Paragon Casino Resort to gather for the Hit for Hope Tunica-Biloxi Governors Cup on June 26

 On June 26, 2023, the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana and Paragon Casino Resort will host the United Way Hit for Hope Tunica-Biloxi Governors Cup, a golf tournament at the Tamahka Trail Golf Course benefiting ALICE programs through United Way of Central Louisiana. ALICE (Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed) programs support working-class families in the community who may be unable to afford the basics of childcare, housing, food and healthcare. These individuals are often struggling to keep their households from financial ruin while keeping our local communities running.

“The Tunica-Biloxi Tribe and Paragon Casino Resort are dedicated to investing in our community’s well-being and future,” said Marshall Pierite, Chairman of the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana, which owns Paragon Casino Resort. “Thanks to partners like United Way, we are able to reach more families in need and provide them with the tools to succeed and care for their loved ones.”

Those interested are encouraged to register for the tournament and participate in a competitive and innovative 18-hole championship-level course golf tournament. Representatives from the Tribe, Paragon Casino Resort and United Way of Central Louisiana will all attend the event, as well as local leaders. 

“Our dedicated participants and partner organizations make this event possible,” said Michelle Purl, President and CEO of United Way of Central Louisiana.  “Each year, we look forward to gathering in support of our ALICE network and the most vulnerable populations in our community. We hope this year’s tournament is a great success, and look forward to a friendly, fun competition.”

The Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana, Paragon Casino Resort and United Way of Central Louisiana have a long history of giving back to the region. In 2021, the tribe donated more than $1 million to charitable causes in Avoyelles Parish alone, with the help of partners like United Way.

Registration for this event and sponsorship opportunities including silver, gold and platinum levels can be found at https://www.uwcl.org/hit-hope

Pow Wow Education Day Returns to Inspire Students of All Ages

After 3-year hiatus, Tribe encourages public to participate in this free, educational event held before annual Pow Wow

The Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana will host a free Education Day following a three-year break due to the COVID-19 pandemic on Friday, May 19, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. This annual public event, held on the Tunica-Biloxi Reservation in Marksville, is a free day of programming dedicated to educating students of all ages on Native American culture and highlights the historical, social and symbolic significance of inter-tribal Pow Wows.

The 2023 Tunica-Biloxi Pow Wow Education Day will consist of Pow Wow dance demonstrations, Tunica-Biloxi storytelling, arts and crafts vendors and displays, flute music and an interactive traditional home. The Ottertrail Singers from Apache, Oklahoma, will accompany dance exhibitions during the programs, and attendees are encouraged to participate in inter-tribal dances, including Round Dance and Two-step. The Tunica-Biloxi Pow Wow Committee is excited to welcome back Native flutist and master flute maker Hawk Henries to Education Day.

“The Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana prides itself on the robust educational programming we have developed over the last several decades,” said Tunica-Biloxi Chairman Marshall Pierite. “This is an opportunity to share Native traditions with students of all ages so they may better understand our rich history and culture, and I encourage all who are able to participate in this wonderful experience.”

Students of all ages and backgrounds are welcome, and group reservations are encouraged. There will be two (2) programs, approximately 75 minutes in length, scheduled for 9:00 a.m. and 11:00 a.m. on Friday, May 19, 2023. For reservations, contact Elisabeth Pierite at (318) 240-6432 or emora@tunica.org. Education Day is a free preview to help audiences understand what they will see at the 25th Tunica-Biloxi Pow Wow held on May 20 & 21.

LCRP Director John Barbry to be Featured in The Historic New Orleans Collection’s 2023 History Symposium

History Symposium 2023: Democracy in Louisiana 

Saturday, April 1, 2023 | 9 a.m. — 5 p.m. 

Hotel Monteleone, New Orleans, LA 

The Historic New Orleans Collection (THNOC) is hosting its 2023 History Symposium, which explores how the democratic system has functioned in Louisiana and how key events have influenced our current political environment. 

Since becoming a state in 1812, Louisiana has participated in America’s bold experiment with democracy.
Moderator Dr. Pearson Cross and a vibrant slate of speakers, including Tunica-Biloxi Language and Culture Revitalization Program Director John Barbry will address topics ranging from the drafting of the first constitution and the politics of enslavement to the women’s suffrage movement in New Orleans and how Louisiana’s environment impacts public policy.

Symposium participants include Dr. Pearson Cross (moderator), Dr. Brian Klopotek, John Barbry, Dr. Steven Procopio, Dr. Laura Roseanne Adderley, Dr. Theodore R. Foster III, Dr. Libby Neidenbach, Dr. Albert L. Samuels, Rebecca Mowbray, Lamar Gardere, Dr. Andy Horowitz

General admission, $75. Students, teachers, and active military with a valid ID, $20. 

Click here for event information.  Click here to purchase tickets.

25th Annual Tunica-Biloxi Pow Wow Returns to Avoyelles Parish

After 3-year hiatus, Tribe encourages public to participate in traditional arts, storytelling, music and dance competitions

Marksville, LA – (March 3, 2023) –This May, the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana will host its 25th Annual Pow Wow following a three-year break due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This annual public event, held on the Tunica-Biloxi Reservation in Marksville, welcomes various regional indigenous tribes to celebrate culture through vibrant craft displays, music performances, dance presentations and cultural exhibits. An assortment of interactive events and live performances throughout the weekend aims to highlight the history and traditions of the Tribe. Not only does this historic, cultural event celebrate the traditions of the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe, but neighboring tribes from across the region, who are invited to share their own culture and heritage as well.

This year’s Pow Wow is also a celebration of community resilience in times of difficulty brought on by the recent pandemic and the perseverance of the Tribe. Native Americans were one of the hardest-hit groups during the COVID-19 pandemic. They faced a long road of protecting their citizens, often living in rural areas far from healthcare access and rebounding in the aftermath. Despite these setbacks, the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe’s reach is as large as ever and only continues to grow while still honoring its culture. Just this past year, the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe saw great victories, including reclaiming ancestral burial grounds in central Louisiana and expanding internet and broadband access within the reservation. Additionally, members of Tribal leadership were selected to serve on numerous federally-appointed boards and committees with the hopes of amplifying the Tunica-Biloxi mission, and the goals of Indian Country nationwide.

“While the annual Pow Wow serves as a much-needed homecoming for Tunica-Biloxi citizens throughout the nation, the upcoming 25th-anniversary celebration is especially important after being separated by time and pandemic for the past three years,” said Tunica-Biloxi Chairman Marshall Pierite. “The year’s celebration is a reminder of our fellowship with other Native American Tribes and the importance of honoring our native cultures while our reach continues to grow nationwide.”

Featured performances and events include the Tunica-Biloxi Singers and Legend Keepers, Native American dance and drum (singing) contests and special performances by Swamp Water and native flutist, Hawk Henries. The event will also feature food and craft vendors.

Additionally, the Tribe will hold an Education Day on Friday, May 19, ahead of the Pow Wow. The event will include two sessions at the Chief Joseph Alcide Pierite Pow Wow Grounds at 9:00 a.m. and 11:00 a.m. Area children and school groups are invited to attend and discover the diverse and vibrant traditions of Native Americans from across the U.S. The event will include dance demonstrations, and attendees are invited to join in. The Tribe also encourages those attending to try their hand at using traditional tools and toys, as well as learn about basketry, clothing and jewelry of tribes of various regions. The Tunica Biloxi Singers and Legend Keepers will also share tribal folklore, language and songs with participants. Admission is free. For more information, contact Elisabeth Pierite-Mora (emora@tunica.org).

For lodging or general information, call 800-272-9767 or visit tunicabiloxi.org. Vendors must apply in advance. Contact Paulette Voiselle (pvoiselle@tunica.org) or Leslie Bonnette (lbonnette@tunica.org) for information on becoming a vendor.

Staged Reading of Play Three Sisters, set on Tunica-Biloxi Reservation, Debuts in Avoyelles Parish

The Tunica-Biloxi Tribe and Oklahoma Indigenous Theatre Company presents a staged reading of the story of three Tunica-Biloxi sisters written by playwright with Tunica roots. 

Marksville, LA – (February 23, 2023) – The Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana, in conjunction with the Oklahoma Indigenous Theatre Company, presents a stage reading of Three Sisters at 7 p.m. on Friday, March 24, and Saturday, March 25, at Paragon Casino Resort. Written by playwright Carolyn Dunn, a descendant of the Tunica-Biloxi and other Native American tribes, Three Sisters shares the story of estranged sisters who return home to Avoyelles Parish in Louisiana at the request of their dying aunt. The performance explores familial ties, hidden secrets and death when they meet at the intersection of love, loss, tradition and culture.

Dunn’s Native American heritage gives her a deep, innate understanding of what motivates her characters and the connection between culture and relationships. Three Sisters give credence to the struggles of the Native American community and the plight tribal citizens face to preserve their culture and traditions when faced with the challenges and pressures of today’s society. 

“It is important for not only the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana, but all of Indian Country to share pieces of our culture with those unfamiliar with our history and traditions,” said John Barbry, Director of the Tunica-Biloxi Language and Culture Revitalization Program. “Our hope is to continue spreading our culture across the country, and with the help of Three Sisters and Carolyn Dunn, we are well on our way. I encourage all audiences to partake in this wonderful story that transcends cultural divides.”

Three Sisters will be read at Paragon Casino Resort on March 24 and 25 at 7 p.m. The performances are free and open to the public. For additional ticketing information, contact Paulette Voiselle at pvoiselle@tunica.org or (318) 240-6400. The performance sponsors include The Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana, the Tunica-Biloxi Education Department, the Tunica-Biloxi Language and Culture Revitalization Program and the Oklahoma Indigenous Theatre Company.

LCRP to Host 6th Annual Intertribal Basketry Summit

Saturday, October 29, 2022 ∞ 9am-4pm
Paragon Ballroom, Paragon Casino Resort
711 Paragon Place, Marksville, Louisiana, 71351

The Tunica-Biloxi Language & Culture Revitalization Program extends an open invitation to basket weavers for a day of weaving. Weavers from regional Native American communities will be demonstrating southeast basket traditions using long leaf pine needle, river cane, and palmetto.

The Summit will be an informal forum allowing weavers to talk about their own technique and elements of their culture represented in the craft. Beginners and observers are encouraged to attend.

The Summit is open to the public. Registration fee is $25. Lunch will be served. Space is limited. Participants must register in advance by contacting Julia Barry at jbarry@tunica.org or (318) 240-6431.

Tunica-Biloxi to Participate in Tulane Gulf South Indigenous Studies Symposium

The New Orleans Center for the Gulf South at Tulane University (NOCGS) is hosting the 4th Annual Tulane Gulf South Indigenous Studies Symposium at their uptown campus on March 18 and 19.

This event brings together scholars, artists, and practitioners from thirteen regional Tribes and several universities and organizations to address the myriad ways Indigenous culture is expressed, practiced, and endangered, through topics such as Indigenous sports, foodways, and storytelling.

For more information, visit https://indigenoussymposium.tulane.edu/.

Upcoming Virtual Language Classes

Upcoming Virtual Language Classes: (Classes are via Zoom) 

April 1 – 29  and May 3 – 6 

For continuing and interested students

Contact Jessica Barbry – 318-240-6469 – jabarbary@tunica.org

For a downloadable language class flyer, click here