Kalispel Tribe, Northern Quest Celebrate Native American Heritage Month Throughout November

Northern Quest Resort & Casino

AIRWAY HEIGHTS, WA – November is Native American Heritage Month, and the Kalispel Tribe and Northern Quest Resort & Casino are planning their largest celebration yet. Throughout the month, Northern Quest will be hosting meaningful celebrations with cultural events, performances, vendors, and more­­; all open for the public to enjoy. All are invited to join in reflecting upon Kalispel tribal culture and history, and celebrate Native American triumphs throughout the years.   

“Native American Heritage Month is a time to reflect not only on the victories of our people, but also on the adversity we’ve overcome throughout the years,” said Tina Nenema, Resort Experience Project Manager and Kalispel Tribal Elder. “I’m so proud of our team at Northern Quest for giving us the space to do this reflection, and also to celebrate our culture!” 

Northern Quest is hosting a variety of free and ticketed events, all of which are open for the public to attend. Tickets and more details about the events listed below can be found on our website at www.northernquest.com/nahm.

  • Paint and Celebrate | Create Kalispel-inspired art at this Native artist-led event.
    • Tipi with Helen Goodteacher
      • Sun, Nov. 12 | 11:00am-1:00pm
      • Highball
      • $50 tickets
  • Fashion Show | Featuring Native designers and models.
    • Sun, Nov 12 | 6:00pm
    • Pend Oreille Pavilion
    • $25 tickets
  • Native Dance and Drum Exhibitions | Tribal Members from across the region will perform traditional dancing, drumming, and singing.
    • Nov 18 | 2:00-4:00pm
    • The Eddy (southeast corner near Windfall)
    • Free to attend
  • Native Jam | Tony Louie, Isaac Tonasket, and Tyus Beebe will perform live in the Pavilion to celebrate Native American Heritage Month.
    • Fri, Nov. 10 | 7:30pm
    • Pend Oreille Pavilion
    • Tickets start at $25
  • Tribal Artisan & Vendor Fair | Shop unique and handmade goods from Native-owned businesses and artists.
    • Nov. 10-12 | 11:00am-7:00pm
    • Near Pend Oreille Pavilion and Windfall
    • Free to attend
  • Northern Quest Dance Championships | 16 dancers will take the stage to perform traditional Fancy Shawl and Fancy Double Bustle dances in this exciting competition.
    • Sat, Nov. 11 | Noon-9:00pm
    • Pend Oreille Pavilion
    • Free to attend
  • Educational Displays:
    • Veterans Day display honoring Kalispel tribal members who served in the U.S. armed forces
    • Educational display dedicated to Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women
    • Display dedicated to the ongoing investigation of missing Native children who attended Catholic residential boarding schools
    • Back-of-house team member-centric display honoring more than 200 employees who are enrolled members of 44 different tribes across the nation

Northern Quests’ restaurants are also celebrating Native American Heritage Month, with special dishes that honor the Kalispel Tribe’s heritage.

  • East Pan Asian Cuisine: Bison Nasi Goreng Fried Rice
  • EPIC Sports Bar: Bison Burger
  • Legends of Fire and The Lounge at Masselow’s: Bison Fry Bread
  • Masselow’s Steakhouse: Bison Ribeye
  • Neon Pizza: Chicken Dumpling Soup

About the Tribe:

In the late 1800’s, the Kalispels were in desperate need of protection and security. In 1887, the Kalispel Tribe was pressured by the United States government to move away from their homeland to another reservation in Montana. Chief Masselow remained steadfast in his refusal to leave the area, even though the tribal population had dwindled from 1,600 tribal members to approximately 100 in 1911. In 1914, the tribe was granted its own reservation by executive order on their ancestral homeland in Usk, WA, located 55 miles north of Spokane. In the last 135 years, the Kalispel Tribe has faced many challenges associated with life in remote rural areas – including unemployment, inadequate housing, substance abuse, limited economic opportunities, and prejudice. With most of the land on the small reservation unsuitable for development, the tribe was forced to develop innovative ways to create opportunity for tribal members.

One of those ideas was to purchase additional land away from the small reservation and build a casino where tribal members could count on gainful employment. In 1996, the tribe secured approximately 300 acres of land in Airway Heights, including 40 acres of reservation trust land designated for gaming. Since the opening of Northern Quest Resort & Casino in 2000, tribal health and social service programs have increased the quality and life expectancy for tribal members and those who live in surrounding communities. Today, the Kalispel Tribe has nearly 500 members. Approximately 35 percent of those members are under the age of 18. The smallest percentage of members are tribal elders. The tribe now maintains several successful businesses, provides more than 2,300 jobs, and has donated more than $23 million to regional and non-profit organizations in Spokane and Pend Oreille Counties.