Canceled: Language & Culture Youth Camp

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, our Language & Culture Youth Camp, originally scheduled for June 8-12, 2020, has been cancelled. The decision was made out of an abundance of caution for our campers and counselors. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause and look forward to when we can gather again safely in the future.

Paragon Casino Resort Reopens Following Temporary Closure Due to COVID-19

Paragon Casino Resort has officially reopened its doors today, May 20, 2020, following a temporary closing due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Paragon opened to the public-at-large at noon today. Paragon Casino Resort joins a number of businesses re-opening in Louisiana following Governor John Bel Edwards’ announcement lifting the stay-at-home mandate on May 15. Paragon officials carefully evaluated the recommendations from the statewide Phase 1 plan and developed a comprehensive health and sanitation plan that prioritizes both guest and associate safety.

“This has been a difficult time for our associates, our patrons and the community as a whole,” said Paragon General Manager Jody Madigan. “We are excited to be opening our doors once again to our friends and guests and look forward to safely and strategically bringing our neighbors and community back to a sense of normalcy. We look forward to seeing you again at Paragon.”

Areas and facilities that were opened today include:

  • Gaming floor (slots and tables)
  • MarketPlace Buffet
  • Gator Coffee
  • Cinema
  • Retail spaces
  • Hotel and hotel lobby
  • Tamahka Trails Golf Course
  • RV Park

The remaining restaurants are not open but will come on-line as Paragon is able to open them. At this time, Kids Quest and the Cyber Quest Arcade will remain closed.

In an effort to keep all patrons and associates healthy, Paragon is limiting points of entry to allow the security team to conduct non-invasive temperature checks utilizing thermal cameras. Additionally, guests are advised to practice physical distancing by standing at least six feet away from groups of people not traveling with them.

“The health of our guests and associates is of the utmost importance,” said Marshall Pierite, Chairman of the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe, which owns Paragon Casino Resort. “This is why we’ve been working diligently and consulting with professionals from the best institutions throughout the country to create a comprehensive plan that entails extensive procedures and protocols to keep everyone safe.”

Protective protocols throughout the space have been put into action. Guests are asked to adhere to the physical distancing protocols on the gaming floor. Dining areas have reduced seating capacities to allow for a minimum of six feet between parties. Retail spaces also have limited occupancy.

Areas where guests or associates queue are clearly marked for appropriate physical distancing. Hand sanitizer dispensers have been placed in key areas and there are health and hygiene reminders throughout the property. Paragon has also installed sneeze guards where possible to protect both guests and associates. Associates are required to wear appropriate personal protective equipment throughout the property.

Cleaning regimens have substantially increased throughout the property utilizing cleaning products and protocols which meet EPA guidelines and are approved for use and effective against viruses, bacteria and other airborne and blood-borne pathogens. Paragon officials are working with vendors, distribution partners and suppliers to ensure an uninterrupted supply of these cleaning supplies and the necessary PPE so everyone on the property may remain safe at all times.

Paragon’s leaders have been on daily calls with various leaders in the industry and are well versed in the process of incremental reopening. Paragon Casino Resort is continuing to closely monitor government policy changes, Centers for Disease Control guidelines, governmental mandates and public health advancements. The Paragon leadership team, together with the leaders of the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana, will continue to make changes as necessary or appropriate to all protocols and procedures.

As community members, Paragon officials ask that guests be respectful of physical distancing from other parties when visiting the casino resort. A list of Frequently Asked Questions has been posted to the website and guests are encouraged to check it out for more information on protocols and procedures prior to their visit. Together, we can keep everyone safe and healthy while enjoying all that Paragon has to offer.

To learn more about the casino resort and to experience all that the Paragon has to offer, visit www.paragoncasinoresort.com or follow them on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. To book a stay at the Paragon Resort or learn more about its amenities, call (318) 253-1946 or 1-800-946-1946.

Paragon Casino Resort Announces Reopening Date of May 20th

Paragon Casino Resort has announced it will officially reopen its doors on May 20, 2020, following a temporary closing due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Paragon will be open to the public-at-large starting at noon on May 20th. Paragon Casino Resort joins a number of businesses re-opening in Louisiana following Governor John Bel Edwards’ announcement lifting the stay-at-home mandate on May 15. Paragon officials carefully evaluated the recommendations from the statewide Phase 1 plan and developed a comprehensive health and sanitation plan that prioritizes both guest and associate safety.

“This has been a difficult time for our associates, our patrons and the community as a whole,” said Paragon General Manager Jody Madigan. “We are excited to be opening our doors once again to our friends and guests and look forward to safely and strategically bringing our neighbors and community back to a sense of normalcy. We look forward to seeing you again at Paragon.”

Areas and facilities that will be open include:

  • gaming floor (slots and tables)
  • MarketPlace Buffet
  • Gator Coffee
  • cinema
  • retail spaces
  • hotel and hotel lobby
  • Tamahka Trails Golf Course
  • RV Park

Initially, the remaining restaurants will not be open but will come on-line as Paragon is able to open them. At this time, Kids Quest and the Cyber Quest Arcade will remain closed.

In an effort to keep all patrons and associates healthy, Paragon will limit points of entry to allow the security team to conduct non-invasive temperature checks utilizing thermal cameras. Additionally, guests will be advised to practice physical distancing by standing at least six feet away from groups of people not traveling with them.

“The health of our guests and associates is of the utmost importance,” said Marshall Pierite, Chairman of the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe, which owns Paragon Casino Resort. “This is why we’ve been working diligently and consulting with professionals from the best institutions throughout the country to create a comprehensive plan that entails extensive procedures and protocols to keep everyone safe.”

Protective protocols throughout the space are being put into action. Guests will be asked to adhere to the physical distancing protocols on the gaming floor. Dining areas will reduce seating capacities to allow for a minimum of six feet between parties. Retail spaces will be limited occupancy.

Areas where guests or associates queue will be clearly marked for appropriate physical distancing. Hand sanitizer dispensers will be placed in key areas and there will be health and hygiene reminders throughout the property. Paragon has also installed sneeze guards where possible to protect both guests and associates.  Associates will be required to wear appropriate personal protective equipment throughout the property.

Cleaning regimens will be substantially increased throughout the property utilizing cleaning products and protocols which meet EPA guidelines and are approved for use and effective against viruses, bacteria and other airborne and blood-borne pathogens. Paragon officials are working with vendors, distribution partners and suppliers to ensure an uninterrupted supply of these cleaning supplies and the necessary PPE so everyone on the property may remain safe at all times.

Paragon’s leaders have been on daily calls with various leaders in the industry and are well versed in the process of incremental reopening. Paragon Casino Resort is closely monitoring government policy changes, Centers for Disease Control guidelines, governmental mandates and public health advancements. The Paragon leadership team, together with the leaders of the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana, will continue to make changes as necessary or appropriate to all protocols and procedures.

As community members, Paragon officials ask that guests be respectful of physical distancing from other parties when visiting the casino resort. A list of Frequently Asked Questions has been posted to the website and guests are encouraged to check it out for more information on protocols and procedures prior to their visit. Together, we can keep everyone safe and healthy while enjoying all that Paragon has to offer.

To learn more about the casino resort and to experience all that the Paragon has to offer, visit www.paragoncasinoresort.com or follow them on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. To book a stay at the Paragon Resort or learn more about its amenities, call (318) 253-1946 or 1-800-946-1946.

Three Elected to Serve on the Tunica-Biloxi Tribal Council

The Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana and its members are proud to announce the re-election of Marshall Ray Sampson, Sr. as Vice-Chairman and Harold Pierite, Sr. as a council member, in addition to the election of James Craig, III as a council member.

“We’re excited to have all three of these men serving on our Tribal Council,” said Tunica-Biloxi Chairman Marshall Pierite. “I am confident that Marshall Ray and Harold will continue to serve the Tribe well, just as they have always done, and I am eager to see the fresh perspective James will bring to our council.”

Marshall Ray Sampson, Sr. has served on the Tribal Council as a Council Member-at-Large since the spring of 1997 and most recently, as Vice-Chairman. Over the years he has worked on budgeting, educational development, political development, community development and has experience in marketing, operations, budgeting, employee training, business development, community relations and expense control. Sampson has more than 23 years of experience in Tribal Government Operations, Gaming, Information Systems, Marketing and Hospitality Administration. He has also served on numerous community and pan-Native American boards on local and regional levels. An employee of the Paragon Casino since 1995, Sampson now holds the position of Assistant General Manager of Operations.

Harold Pierite, Sr. was also re-elected as a Council Member-at-Large. Pierite serves as board member of the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana and has been a member of the tribal council for more than 15 years. Currently serving as the chief of police for the Tunica-Biloxi Police Department for more than 20 years, Pierite also sits on the board of directors for Mobiloans, LLC. In 2017 and again in 2020, he was appointed to the Louisiana State Police Commission, representing the State’s 5th Congressional District.

James Craig, III, who is from Chicago, IL, is the newly elected council member. Before Craig was elected, he was a Relationship Manager at Bank of America, where he helped low income and high-income clients by educating them on day to day personal finances, established new relationships with high clientele and created business relationships with business owners. Craig holds the rank of Staff Sergeant in the Illinois National Guard. His Military Occupation Specialty is Interrogation Operations Sergeant, where he oversees a special team of soldiers that conducts interrogations for international matters. During his tenure with the military, he has deployed two times to Iraq and once to Afghanistan, leading soldiers at the front lines. He has previously worked for MB Financial, Fifth Third Bank and Harley Davidson.

A Letter from The Tunica-Biloxi Tribal Council to All Tunica-Biloxi Citizens

Dear Citizens of the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana,
 
The global pandemic of Novel Coronavirus, known as COVID-19, has hit our home state of Louisiana hard with an infection rate that is exceeding the rest of the country. We now must take urgent additional steps to protect our Community.
 
After careful deliberation, and in consultation with healthcare authorities and our local, state and federal partners, the Tunica-Biloxi Tribal Council advises all Tribal Members to self-isolate by remaining at home for a period of at least two weeks. Please only leave your home for emergencies, such as seeking necessary medical attention or to purchase essential goods and services. Also, please refrain from any unnecessary gatherings. Tribal members are allowed to vote on April 5th for the Tribal Council elections, however.
 
We recognize this stay-at-home request, along with prior orders closing schools, canceling Tribal events and enacting other restrictions, impacts each of our daily lives. Everyone has seen the devastation in communities where COVID-19 has become prevalent. We must do everything we can to stop the spread of this illness to protect our elders, children and fellow Citizens. Lives are at stake.
 
The good news is we as individuals can do our part to help break the chain of virus transmission by doing something simple: staying at home. This will help prevent Tribal and regional healthcare facilities from becoming overwhelmed with patients requiring attention.
 
This is a time for smart action, not fear or panic. Measures already enacted have closed or canceled non-essential Tribal offices and events and eliminated non-essential travel by Tribal employees. Please check Tribal and State websites for the latest on services and programs.
 
Preventing the spread of COVID-19 is a monumental task, but this is something we can – and must – do together. Thank you to the incredible doctors, nurses and other members of the medical community who are fighting at all hours to contain the spread of COVID-19 and treat those who have tested positive. Thank you, also, to the first responders, essential personnel and employees who are joining in this effort to protect our community. The small sacrifice we make together will help ensure our community emerges from this challenge stronger and more unified than ever.
 
Sincerely,
Chairman Marshall Pierite

Paragon Casino Resort Update

Tribal Members,

As you all know, the Tunica-Biloxi Tribal Council declared a state of emergency on March 12, 2020 in response to the spread of COVID-19. Due to continued safety concerns, the Tribal Council has made the decision to temporarily close Paragon Casino Resort beginning at 5 p.m. on Tuesday, March 17.

While Paragon serves as an essential economic driver for Marksville, LA and the surrounding area, safety and health are top priorities for our community at large and our Tribe. We believe it is in the best interest of Paragon’s employees, patrons and Tribal members, to close Paragon facilities out of an abundance of caution.

Additionally, the Tunica-Biloxi reservation will remain open, but only essential Tribal employees will be working on the reservation. In the interim, we are still available to assist with any needs you and your family might have. We urge you to communicate with the Tribe and Tribal Council accordingly.

As mentioned in previous updates, the Tribal Council is continuing to coordinate with local, state and federal agencies including the Federal Center for Disease Control and the Louisiana Governor’s Office to address ongoing concerns, especially those of our Tunica-Biloxi families. To view our previous update on the Tribe’s response to COVID-19, click here.

For updates and announcements from the Tribe, please visit our website and official Facebook page. Additionally, for the latest information on COVID-19, visit the Louisiana Department of Health website and the Center for Disease Control website.

Sincerely,
Your Tribal Council

Coronavirus Update

March 12, 2020

Dear Tribal Members,

On March 12, 2020, the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana Tribal Council declared a state of emergency in response to COVID-19, also known as the coronavirus. Out of an abundance of caution, the general membership meeting scheduled for Saturday, March 14 has been officially postponed until further notice.

In an effort to prevent potential spread of the virus, a travel ban has also been issued for all employees of the Tribal Government. The Tribe is currently coordinating with local, state, and federal agencies including the Federal Center for Disease Control and the Louisiana Governor’s Office to address ongoing concerns of Tunica-Biloxi families. 

The Tribe encourages members to follow official updates from the Federal Center for Disease Control to prevent the spread of the virus, including, but not limited to: following strict handwashing procedures, performing routine environmental cleaning, and covering your mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing.

Our priority is ensuring the health and well-being of our Tribal members. We also ask that you take a moment to check on all of our families, especially Tribal Elders and our most vulnerable. In the interim, please communicate with the Tribe and the Tribal Council if there is anything that may be needed.

For updates and announcements from the Tribe, please follow our official website and Facebook page. Additionally, for the latest information on COVID-19, visit the LDH website and the CDC website.

Sincerely,

Your Tribal Council

Three Tribal Members Receive Scholarships to Attend the 2020 Institute on Collaborative Language Research

Congratulations to Juston Broussard, Teyanna Pierite Simon, and Ryan Lopez for receiving scholarships to attend the 2020 Institute on Collaborative Language Research (CoLang 2020) at the University of Montana. The scholarships cover tuition, meals, housing and travel costs for the 2-week institute.

CoLang is an international institute for language activists, teachers, linguists and students from language communities and academia to obtain hands-on skills in language documentation and revitalization as practiced in collaborative contexts as well as in technology and basic linguistics in community-based research contexts. The Institute creates multi-dimensional networks among community language workers, teachers, researchers, and students. CoLang 2020 will be hosted by the University of Montana in collaboration with Chief Dull Knife College.

Third Annual New Orleans Center for the Gulf South Indigenous Symposium

For the third year, Tulane University will host the New Orleans Center for the Gulf South Indigenous Symposium. This year’s symposium is titled “Being Native Today: Indigenous Identities in the Gulf South” and will be held on March 20, 2020 at 8:30 am – 5:30 pm in the Kendall Cram Lecture Hall in the Lavin-Bernick Center on Tulane University’s Uptown Campus.

Through dialogues with different members of Tribal Nations, this symposium seeks to address the dynamic components of Indian identity and open a conversation about the variety of ways in which diverse Native peoples understand what it means to be Indigenous today.

For more information on the event visit: indigenoussymposium.tulane.edu