Published on June 26, 2014 by Amy
The Ak Chin Indian Community is a federally-recognized tribal entity and is primarily associated with the Maricopa (Ak Chin) Indian Reservation in Arizona.
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42507 West Peters & Nall Rd
Maricopa, Arizona 85238
The Ak-Chin Indian Community was created in May 1912 by Executive Order of President Taft who initially signed for a 47,000-acre reservation. However, in September of the same year another Executive Order was issued which reduced the size of the reservation to its current 21,840 acres.
This Indian community is primarily associated with the Ak Chin Indian Reservation, formerly known as the Maricopa Indian Reservation, in Arizona.
The Ak-Chin, who are comprised of both Papago (currently known as Tohono O’odham) and Pima people, own and operate a 109 acre industrial park which was constructed in 1971. Suitable for light industry and agricultural-related industries, the industrial park is located at the southeast corner of the reservation, adjacent to the Maricopa-Casa Grande Highway and the Southern Pacific Railroad. As the landscape and terrain are ideal for growing crops, most of the land is primarily used for agriculture. The Ak-Chin Farms Enterprises manages these activities. 16,000 acres of Ak-Chin land are under irrigation.
A water rights settlement approved by Congress in 1984 entitles the Ak-Chin Indian Community to 75,000 acre-feet of Colorado River water. The community is actively exploring demonstration projects and long-term investments to find alternative ways of conserving the life-giving water supply. Ak-Chin is also working diligently to upgrade the quality of residential water supplied as well as the efficiency of its sewer facilities so that health standards and conditions may be improved for members.
In addition to agricultural activities, the Ak-Chin Community has developed a 100-acre industrial park. The 70,000-square-foot Harrah’s Ak-Chin Casino contributes greatly to the economy. The entire tribe participates in the United States’ first EcoMuseum, distinguished from a traditional museum in that land and territory replace the museum building and area residents take on the roles of curator and public. This museum houses prehistoric local artifacts owned by tribal families.
Ak-Chin, located in a lush desert area, is 43 miles northwest of the Casa Grande Ruins National Monument, which consists of wellpreserved remains of a central four-story building and several smaller outlying buildings constructed by the Hohokam Indians during the 13th century. West of Ak-Chin, low picturesque mountains enclose the scenic oasis on the desert. Remnants of other civilizations which inhabited the basin during earlier times are still in evidence. Major events held on the reservation include: St. Francis Church Feast (October); Honoring Past Chairman’s Day (October); Annual Tribal Council Election (second Saturday in January); and the annual Ak-Chin Him-Dak Museum celebration (April).