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Dayna Pearson
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July 13, 2016


Onamia, Minn. – Grand Casino Mille Lacs announced today it will be hosting a Mille Lacs Community Festival during the 2016 Toyota® Bassmaster Angler of the Year Tournament happening September 15-18, 2016. The Community Festival, which will run September 17 and 18, will showcase local and regional vendors and highlight the businesses and community groups that make the Mille Lacs region a world-class fishing and vacation destination.

The Mille Lacs Community Festival will be held in the front parking lot of Grand Casino Mille Lacs on Saturday, September 17 from noon to 6 p.m. and on Sunday, September 18 from noon to 5 p.m. MLCV expects hundreds of vendors from around the state to participate.

“We’re so proud to be hosting this nationally recognized tournament and showcasing Mille Lacs Lake,” said Joe Nayquonabe, Jr., CEO of Mille Lacs Corporate Ventures. “There are so many reasons to visit this region year-round and we’re thrilled that the superb bass fishing is getting the attention that it deserves.”

The Toyota® Bassmaster Angler of the Year Tournament is the finale of the Bassmaster Elite Series and will bring some of the best anglers in the country to fish Mille Lacs Lake. The tournament is a major spectator draw; past tournaments have brought anywhere from 15,000 to 30,000 visitors to the host region. The 2016 Elite Series comprises 10 tournaments in addition to the Classic Bracket event, an increase over the nine events of 2015.

“In addition to highlighting the incredible bass fishing that Mille Lacs Lake offers, visitors will be able to experience the wide-variety of resort and vacation destinations that exist around the lake,” Nayquonabe continued.

Local resort operators have collaborated to launch a website to showcase the region for visitors. Visitors can go to to explore lodging and entertainment options during the tournament.

“Hosting the Toyota® Bassmaster Angler of the Year Tournament is part of Mille Lacs Corporate Ventures’ commitment to be a strong community partner and grow the local economy,” Nayquonabe concluded. “Past events have seen millions of dollars spent on everything from equipment to lodging, meals and entertainment.”

An economic analysis of the impact from the Bassmaster tournament held in Orange, TX showed more than $2 million in positive economic impact.

If you’re interested in becoming a vendor during the Mille Lacs Community Expo, please visit and click on events to fill out an application.

About Mille Lacs Corporate Ventures
Mille Lacs Corporate Ventures manages all the Mille Lacs Band’s businesses, including Grand Casino Mille Lacs, Grand Casino Hinckley, Eddy’s Resort on Lake Mille Lacs, InterContinental Saint Paul Riverfront Hotel and the DoubleTree Hilton in St. Paul, Minn., the DoubleTree Minneapolis Park Place in St. Louis Park, Minn., Big Sandy Lodge & Resort in McGregor, Minn., 2020 Brand Solutions, Embassy Suites Oklahoma City and other Band-owned businesses such as a cinema, a grocery store, gas/convenience stores, a golf course, wastewater treatment plant, a commercial laundry facility, a medical office building and a print shop. It also oversees certain amount of the Band’s investments and considers new business opportunities to provide economic support for the Band’s future. Mille Lacs Corporate Ventures has over 3,500 employees and its board of directors is comprised of five members, who guide the business and investment decisions for the Band. Visit for more information.