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Flandreau Santee Sioux Tribe fully booked for launch of pot resort

The Royal River Family Entertainment Center in Flandreau, South Dakota. Image from Google Maps

The Flandreau Santee Sioux Tribe of South Dakota is rushing to meet the demand for hotel rooms as it prepares to launch the first marijuana resort in the United States.

All of the rooms at the Royal River Casino are already booked for the launch on December 31, Treasurer Ryan Kills A Hundred told KSFY. So the tribe is planning to add 60 to 100 additional rooms to accommodate more patrons.

“The economics it could bring, very well could be close to a Sturgis," Kills a Hundred told KSFY, referring to the Sturgis motorcycle rally that attracts hundreds of thousands of people and millions of dollars to the state.

The 10,000 square-foot marijuana lounge is going into a building near the casino that currently houses the Royal River Family Entertainment Center. The tribe is completely revamping the structure and it will offer a bowling alley, bar, lounge, arcade, live music and a dance floor.

Flandreau Santee Sioux Tribe President Anthony Reider. Photo from Facebook

The tribal council voted 5 to 1 in June to legalize marijuana on the reservation. The council also adopted comprehensive set of laws and policies to address the sale and use of the drug.

Marijuana otherwise remains illegal under federal law. But the Department of Justice opened the door to legal marijuana in Indian Country with the 2014 Wilkinson memo.

The state of South Dakota, however, claims that non-Indians who use marijuana on the reservation can still face prosecution under state law.

The tribe is working with Monarch America on the project.

Get the Story:
Tribe breaks ground on marijuana lounge (KSFY 10/3)
A 'deal with the devil'? Native American tribes push for marijuana legalization (The Guardian 10/2)

An Opinion:
Short take by Kevin Horrigan: And now, an Indian marijuana resort (The St. Louis Post-Dispatch 10/3)

Relevant Documents:
Department of Justice Policy Statement Regarding Marijuana Issues in Indian Country (October 2014)

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