Yahipi Kin Waste, or welcome, to the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux (Dakota) Community®. The vibrant prairies riverbanks, and lakes of the Minnesota and Upper Mississippi river area have been home to the Dakota people for centuries. Generations of Dakota families fished the rivers, gathered rice from lakes, hunted game on the prairies and established villages along the riverbanks and surrounding lakes. The existence of the Dakota ancestors was sustained by their relationship with the earth and their surroundings.
As European settlers began arriving in increasing numbers onto the Dakota’s native lands, conflict grew. After an armed conflict in 1862, where the Dakota fought for their homeland, the United States government broke its treaties with the Dakota and most of the Dakota people were removed from Minnesota.
The Dakota who remained in Minnesota, including the Lower Sioux, Prairie Island, Upper Sioux, and Shakopee tribes, worked to keep their culture and traditions alive, while trying to establish a government and economic system that would support their members. After many years of persistence, the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community® was federally recognized as a Tribal government in 1969.
Seeking a solution to the tribe’s economic struggles, Shakopee Tribal Chairman, Norman M. Crooks brought high stakes Bingo to Minnesota in 1982 with the opening of Little Six® Bingo. In 1988 the passage of the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act established the basis for tribes to negotiate compacts with the State of Minnesota to offer blackjack and video slots and Little Six® Bingo became Little Six Casino®.
Little Six® Bingo and Little Six Casino® were named after Dakota Chief Sakpe (pronounced Shock-Pay). The English translation of the Dakota name Sakpe is the number six. The tribe’s name Shakopee is also derived from the more literal form of Chief Sakpe’s name. The word Mdewakanton translates to Dwellers of Spirit Lake, or Mystic Lake.
Two years after slot machines were introduced at Little Six Casino®, Mystic Lake Casino® opened its doors. Today, the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community® owns and operates Mystic Lake Casino Hotel®, Little Six Casino®, Dakotah! Sport & Fitness, Playworks, Shakopee Dakota Convenience Stores, Dakotah Meadows RV Park and Campgrounds, Dakotah Meadows Mini Storage, The Meadows at Mystic Lake Golf Club, Mazopiya Natural Food Market, and Mystic Lake Store at the Mall of America.
After years of operating in its original structure, Little Six Casino® moved into a brand new building in December 2007. Today, Little Six Casino® sits on the original site that Little Six Bingo did 30 years before.
The Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community® sincerely hopes you enjoy your visit to our community and Little Six Casino®.
To learn more about Indian Gaming in Minnesota visit www.mnindiangaming.com