The Otoe-Missouria Tribe

The Otoe-Missouria Tribe

  • Otoe-Missouria Youth Become the First Tribal Emergency Response Team Instructors in Nation

    By Heather Payne, Otoe-Missouria Public Information Office on January 15, 2019

    NORMAN, Okla.--Four Otoe-Missouria tribal youth became the first Tribal Teen CERT Team Instructors in the United States this weekend in Norman.  

    CERT teams are Community Emergency Response Team (CERT), sponsored by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). They are a national program of volunteers trained in disaster preparedness and emergency response.

    The youth participated in a 20-hour training that taught them how to be instructors for other youth and adults. Upon completion of their training, the youth are now certified to instruct others on the creation of CERT Teams.

    Previously the youth were part of the first Tribal Teen CERT Team also through the Otoe-Missouria Tribe.

    The new Teen CERT Team instructors are Anias Bible, Derek Bible, Michaela Kihega and Breanna Kihega (the Otoe-Missouria Tribal Princess). Their chaperone was Carolee Bible Pratt who also completed the instructor training.

    The instructor training took place at the Norman Fire Department with participation from the Norman Fire Department, Oklahoma County Emergency Management and the Oklahoma City Emergency Management. The training was sponsored by the Oklahoma Office of Homeland Security.

    During their previous trainings, the Otoe-Missouria Teen CERT participants learned: how to extinguish small fires; conduct light search and rescue; assist those who are injured; set up medical treatment areas; assist emergency responders; identify and anticipate hazards; reduce fire hazards in the home and workplace; help reduce survivor stress.

    For the last several years the Otoe-Missouria Emergency Manager James LeClair has worked with FEMA to prepare the tribe and the surrounding community for natural and manmade disasters. His efforts have resulted in the establishment of an adult and teen CERT teams.

    “The youth plan on teaching their own TEEN CERT Camp sometime in the future and they would also like to do a leadership camp in participation with other tribes,” LeClair says. “I cannot tell you how proud I am of these kids. They gave up a whole weekend to become Certified CERT instructors.”

    The Otoe-Missouria Teen CERT will also be presenting at the Intertribal Emergency Management Coalition (ITEMC) Summit as well as volunteering their time to help to help at the event.

    For more information about the Otoe-Missouria Teen Cert Team contact James LeClair at 580-723-4466 ext 142.

    The Otoe-Missouria Teen CERT Team became the first Tribal Teen CERT Instructors in the nation during a training over the weekend in Norman. The new certified instructors are (L to R) Michaela Kihega, Derek Bible, Breanna Kihega, chaperone Carolee Bible Pratt and Anias Bible. 

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  • Otoe-Missouria Tribe Opens New Water Treatment Facility; Provides water to rural Oklahomans

    By Heather Payne, OMT Public Information Office on December 6, 2018

    Red Rock, OKLA.--The Otoe-Missouria Tribe held a ribbon cutting on Wednesday, December 5 in Red Rock to officially begin operation of the tribe’s new water treatment facility.

    After years of enduring issues with poor quality water, the tribe created an intense reorganization plan for the utility authority and the water plant in the fall of 2016.  The Tribal Council appointed the Otoe-Missouria Utility Authority Board and the members began reorganization immediately. 

    Municipalities in the area where the tribe is located struggle with plentiful water sources and effective treatment of water. With the completion of this water treatment facility, the tribe will be able to support some of the communities, residences and businesses in the area that previously did not have access to potable water.

    The new water treatment plant is over 6,500 square feet, much larger than the previous 1,000 square foot water treatment facility. The new water cleaning equipment is state-of-the-art and includes a plate settler system.

    Plate settler systems are designed to remove particulates from liquids. They are often employed in primary water treatment in place of conventional settling tanks. Unlike conventional clarifiers they use a series of inclined plates. These inclined plates provide a large effective settling area for a small footprint. The inlet stream is stilled upon entry into the clarifier. Solid particles begin to settle on the plates and begin to accumulate in collection hoppers at the bottom of the clarifier unit. The sludge is drawn off at the bottom of the hoppers and the clarified liquid exits the unit.

    The pilot study for the equipment was completed in the summer of 2016 and demonstrated how well the water was cleaned through this system.

    The previous plant cleaned about between 40-55 gallons per minute depending on the turbidity of the inflowing water. The new plant will clean a maximum capacity of 175 gallons per minute using just one of the two cleaning lines. The two-line system allows for continuous water output on one line while maintenance and cleaning occur on the other line. The cost of the construction was $4.4 million.

    The new facility can be monitored remotely and in-person. At any given time, one of the six staff members of the water treatment plant will be present in the facility to insure high water quality. 

    The tribe worked with many different agencies including the Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality and the Oklahoma Rural Water Association as well as Bronze Oak who constructed the plant itself and who provided training to the water plant staff.

    The Otoe-Missouria Tribe is located in North Central Oklahoma in Red Rock. There are a currently 3,259 members enrolled in the tribe with the majority living in Oklahoma. The tribe was relocated to Oklahoma in 1881 from its first reservation on the border of Nebraska and Kansas. The tribe currently owns five casinos, two gas stations, two event centers, a hotel, a cattle company, a steakhouse, financial service companies, a propane company and it will open a water park in 2019. 

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  • Results of Tribal Council Election

    on November 4, 2018

    Unofficial Tribal Council Election Results

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  • ALL Enrolled OM Elders to Receive Turkey Gift Certificate

    on October 30, 2018

    ALL Elders to Receive Turkey Gift Certificate

    This year, instead of handing out actual turkeys to Otoe-Missouria elders in the Oklahoma City and Red Rock area, ALL enrolled tribal elders will be mailed a $25 gift certificate that can be used to purchase a turkey and/or other food items for your holiday meal.

    Elders were determined as anyone who would be 55+ years of age or older by Thanksgiving November 22, 2018.

    Butterball Gift Checks cannot be replaced if lost, stolen or damaged (washed, torn, written on, etc.) so please safeguard the certificates. Certificates will be mailed to the address on file with the Otoe-Missouria Enrollment Office.

    Butterball gift checks are accepted at any grocery store nation-wide that carries Butterball products and accepts checks as a form of payment – virtually all stores. The certificate can be used for turkey or ham or whatever food item you like.


    DO NOT WRITE ON THE CERTIFICATE. The “pay to the order of” line should made out to the store’s name where you are purchasing your food at the time of purchase.

    If your turkey costs less than the gift check’s face value, we encourage adding more grocery food items to your purchase so the entire gift check’s value can be used and not lost.

    All certificates will be mailed at the end of October and are non-transferable.

    This gift was made possible by a generous donation from AWL and the Otoe-Missouria Tribal Council.

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  • 2018 Hunting Season Open on Tribal Lands

    on October 23, 2018

    Fall 2018-Spring 2019


    ARCHERY: October 1, 2018 through January 15, 2019

    MUZZLELOADING: October 20, 2018 through November 4, 2018

    GUN: November 10, 2018 through January 15, 2019


    1. Tribal Hunters and Guests must obtain a Tribal Hunting Permission Card from the Environmental Protection Office (located in the OM Cultural Building).
    2. Non-Tribal guests (including tribal employees) must always be accompanied by a Tribal Member.
    3. All Hunters are required to display Hunter Orange conspicuously on both head and an outer garment during Muzzleloading and Gun Seasons. Camouflage hunter orange is legal.
    4. Shooting Hours shall be one-half hour before official sunrise to one-half hour after official sunset.
    5. Shooting from inside a vehicle is not allowed.
    6. After harvesting a deer, hunters must check it at the tribal police station and will be issued a carcass tag.
    7. No person may dump the carcass of any dead animal in any well, spring, pond, or stream of water or leave it within ¼ mile of any occupied dwelling or tribal building without burying the carcass in an appropriate manner where it is not liable to become exposed through erosion of the soil or where such land is subject to overflow.

    The Otoe-Missouria Police Department (OMPD) shall enforce the rules stated above. The OMPD may, at its discretion, suspend or revoke permission cards from individuals for failure to comply with stated rules. 

    The Tribal Council has the authority to amend these Deer Hunting Rules and to allow additional hunting seasons as they see fit.

    The Hunting Permission Card is valid for both hunting and fishing. Please contact the Otoe-Missouria Environmental Department for more information about acquiring a Tribal Hunting Permission Card at 580-723-4466.

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  • Photo Exhibit at Pioneer Woman Museum

    on May 21, 2018

    Otoe-Missouria Exhibit to Open at Pioneer Woman Museum

    By the Otoe-Missouria Public Information Office


    Ponca City, OKLA--A special exhibit of historical photographs and artifacts from the Otoe-Missouria Tribe opens May 23rd at the Pioneer Woman Museum in Ponca City and will remain on display through December 2018.


    The exhibit began in 2011 as an outreach project for the Otoe-Missouria Public Information Office. 

    The photos and artifacts in the collection were either donated to the Otoe-Missouria Public Information Office by tribal members or included by agreement with museums and historical archive throughout the United States.


    “We now have over 150 photos in the Otoe-Missouria Photo Archive, but the exhibit only shows 35 photos and videos,” Heather Payne Public Information Officer says. “The photos in the exhibit correlate with historical high points and culturally relevant topics. In addition, this year, we will be displaying an Otoe-Missouria turban. This will be the first time this circa 1900 traditional headdress will be on display.”


    In 2013, the exhibit was on display at the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum in Oklahoma City. As the exhibit grew, it got the attention of museum curators in the region.


    “The Executive Director of the Standing Bear Museum in Ponca City visited the exhibit,” Payne says. “She was interested in having the display set up at Standing Bear, but that didn’t pan out. And over the years, we have been unable to get the exhibit set up at Standing Bear due to their limited availability of space for temporary exhibits. It would be the perfect location, but we just haven’t been able to make it happen.”


    Payne says that the mission of the Pioneer Woman Museum ties in well with the exhibit. The mission of the museum is to preserve the legacy of women from all races, creeds, and nationalities who have contributed to the development of Oklahoma. The museum is dedicated to the enduring spirit of women—past, present, and future—who see no boundaries. 


    “I had to make a few changes to the exhibit,” Payne says. “I added more photos of women and children. These strong Otoe-Missouria women pioneered a new life in Oklahoma. A place they had never been before and that they didn’t choose to live. They came as refugees—forced to leave their homeland. They survived and carried with them what traditions they could even under pressure to assimilate and give up their old ways. They endured.”


    Payne says that some images in the collection were edited out of the exhibit because they were such low quality that they couldn’t be enlarged enough for the gallery.

    “A lot of the photos were brought into my office by family members for me to use,” Payne says, “but the quality of the photos was sometimes very low. Often all that I had was a copy of a copy of a copy. The resolution was so poor that it couldn’t be used at all. Thank goodness for graphic artist Kennetha Greenwood who really worked hard to get some of the images up to museum quality again.”

    The information about the images has also been a challenge for Payne. She says there have been several instances where information about the people in the photo is unclear.

    “There are at least two photos in the collection that the identity of the people in the photo is challenged by different families,” Payne says. “One family says it is their grandfather so-and-so and another family says it is their grandfather so-and-so. How do you decide who is right? You can’t. You just have to say that there is a disagreement about the identity of this person on the text panel and provide the information you have at hand. Every year I make edits and changes to the information with the photos. It’s an evolving project.”

    Payne says she worked to make the exhibit interesting to Otoe-Missouria tribal members, but still basic enough for the general public to appreciate.


    “It’s funny because you get so used to talking to other Native people that you forget sometimes that the terms, language and words used in Indian Country aren’t universal,” Payne says. “The Pioneer Woman Museum Director Kelly Houston and her staff have been really great about asking good questions and making sure I explained things for a broad audience. I hope the result is educational for everyone.”


    The Pioneer Woman Museum staff and the Otoe-Missouria Tribe will host several events this year in coordination with the exhibit including activities for groups this summer and special events for schools in the fall.


    The Pioneer Woman Museum is located at 701 Monument Rd, Ponca City, OK. They are open Tuesday through Saturday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. To learn more about the Otoe-Missouria Tribe visit



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  • Tribe to Build Indoor Water Park & Expand Hotel

    on February 21, 2018

    NEWKIRK, Okla.-- The Otoe-Missouria Tribe announces its newest economic development project—the construction of an indoor water park and expansion of the tribe’s hotel located at 7Clans First Council Casino in Newkirk, OK.

    When completed the project will feature a 20,000 sq ft water park which includes three large thrill rides, a children's pool with additional slides, a separate teenage pool and a lazy river; 60 additional suite style rooms, including many with bunk beds, to bring the hotel capacity to 146 rooms; a first-floor arcade adjoining the hotel expansion and water park as well as food and beverage service for the water park and a meeting room plus.

    The project is scheduled to be completed and open for business in late December 2018 and will bring approximately 70 new jobs to the area. 

    Otoe-Missouria Chairman John R. Shotton says this is just the latest development that the tribe has created to continue a path of economic sovereignty. 

    "The Otoe-Missouria tribe is exited to break ground on the 7Clans First Council Hotel expansion and indoor waterpark," Shotton says. "This project is next phase in our plan to be the top entertainment destination in North Central Oklahoma. Building upon our outstanding gaming and hotel facilities as well as our unique concert venue, we look forward to offering even more entertainment options to our patrons and their families. The expansion will provide a family entertainment experience unlike any other in our region."

    7Clans Casino CEO Bruce Barnett believes the water park creates a unique opportunity for 7Clans First Council Casino and Hotel. 

    "Having the indoor water park adds year-round entertainment value for the entire family and will be a differentiator for our property," Barnett says. 

    John Lyden began serving as the Chief Financial Officer of the Otoe-Missouria Development Authority this past July. Mr. Lyden brings years of insight and acumen with him from his previous post with Great Wolf Lodge Resorts.

    The Otoe-Missouria tribe operates five gaming facilities in North Central Oklahoma including 7Clans First Council Casino and Hotel in Newkirk, 7Clans Gasino at Chilocco, 7Clans Paradise Casino, 7Clans Gasino at Red Rock and 7Clans Casino in Perry. 



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  • Air Med ambulance offered FREE to Tribal Members

    on September 15, 2017

    The tribe is negotiating with Air Med to provide air ambulance services to all enrolled tribal members at no cost to the tribal members. The Air Med coverage would start on January 1, 2018.

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