April 09, 2008

Kiowas relaunch Indian City USA

Cultural preservation

Shakopee grant helps Kiowa Tribe purchase Indian City USA

Grand re-opening to take place May 17-18
Indian City USA has been a tourist draw since 1955, when it was built south of Anadarko with the help of University of Oklahoma anthropologists.

Sitting atop a hill, Indian City and the surrounding land of approximately 200 acres houses a museum, gift shop, reconstructed tribal villages, a small buffalo herd and a ceremonial dance ground that two Kiowa societies, Kiowa Black Leggings and O-ho-mah Lodge, have used for decades. Serving as a tour guide or dancing every day during the summer has also been the first job of many Native people who live in the Anadarko area.

But for many years, different aspects of Indian City have fallen into disrepair, with many of the outdoor villages and Indian City building itself needing renovations.

Since 2004, Indian City has been on the market, with no suitable buyers. In 2006, the Kiowa Tribe expressed an interest in purchasing Indian City, according to Lawton Constitution reports. On Feb. 22, the Kiowa Tribe closed the deal to purchase Indian City from its shareholders for $600,000, which is $66,000 under its appraised value.

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