September 2021
What's New at AIANTA?
CEO Sherry L. Rupert and We-Ko-Pa Representatives catching up at NIGA in July 2021
O me'a"kwa
(I’m going to travel over there, Northern Paiute)

AITC is Around the Corner

It’s hard to believe we’re just one month away from our 23rd Annual American Indian Tourism Conference, which begins on October 25, in Fort McDowell, AZ.

This year has been such a whirlwind with so many changes, so I’m excited for the chance to catch up with you all in Arizona.

I know every community is at a different level of readiness when it comes to fully re-implementing cultural heritage programming, so although tourism can be a path to economic recovery, it can’t come at the expense of our health, our safety and our peace of mind.
AITC COVID-19 Mitigation Plan
As the spread of the COVID-19 Delta variant continues to make headlines, an increasing number of potential attendees at our 23rd Annual American Indian Tourism Conference (AITC) have been asking the same question: “is the conference still on?”

While none of us has a crystal ball as to what the future will hold, AIANTA would like to assure attendees that plans for an in-person conference—scheduled for October 25-28, 2021, in Fort McDowell (Scottsdale), Arizona—continue as planned.

Photo from
Town Hall Series:
Tourism Marketing Initiatives for 2022 and Beyond
September 29, 2021, 1 p.m. MDT
As AIANTA enters its new fiscal year, the association is rolling out an exciting series of new partner opportunities. Joining AIANTA’s already established partnerships with the Juan Bautista de Anza National Historic Trail, the Lewis & Clark National Trail and the Native American Agriculture Fund, we will also be celebrating 250 (and more) years of Native American history in conjunction with the America250 Partnership and a brand new marketing initiative with the Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics.
American Indian Tourism Conference Agenda
We are thrilled to announce that we have made the finishing touches on the schedule for this year's AITC. We have an all-star lineup of speakers and exhibitors and we can't wait to show you all what we've put together. See you all there in October.

AIANTA Seeks Albuquerque-Area Hotel for Go International 2022
AIANTA is seeking proposals from qualified Native American and non-Native venues in the Albuquerque, New Mexico area to host AIANTA’s two-day Go International workshop.

Native American Heritage Month
Native American Heritage Month (November) is quickly approaching and we are working on updating our NAHM information webpage.

Check out our page and let us know if we're missing any big events or things your Tribe is hosting or participating in this year. Email AIANTA's Content and Social Media Coordinator Jacqueline Robledo and we will help get the word out about your Tribe's events.

Cultural Tourism Funding Opportunities
Visit AIANTA’s redesigned Funding Opportunities web to find potential funding sources for your cultural heritage programming.

AIANTA collects funding opportunities that may be of interest to Indigenous or Native American tourism & hospitality enterprises looking to grow their tourism, culture, heritage, arts, agritourism or other culture and heritage programming.

Case Studies in Tribal Agritourism
The first guide of its kind, Case Studies in Tribal Agritourism was created to inspire Native American and indigenous farmers, ranchers and other food producers interested in expanding their agricultural operations to include visitor components.

Juan Bautista de Anza National Historic Trail
In partnership with the National Park Service (NPS), AIANTA is chronicling the stories of the tribes located on or near the Juan Bautista de Anza National Historic Trail.

The three-year partnership will result in educational webinars, a print/online guidebook reflecting past and present-day tribal attractions at key spots along the trail, and a first-of-its kind map, that will translate key locations along the trail back in their original native locators.

Experience Native America Along the Lewis & Clark Trail
In partnership with the National Park Service, AIANTA is working with tribes adjacent to the Lewis and Clark National Historic Trail to develop cultural heritage content and itineraries. The project is bringing together businesses, attractions, landmarks and other points of interest on and around the trail to help promote sustainable tourism.

AIANTA Webinar Series
Photo credit:
AIANTA's Webinar Series presents marketing tips, funding opportunities and other tips for creating and growing successful tribal tourism enterprises.

Save the Date

Tuesday, September 21, 2021; 10 a.m. MDT

Monday, September 27, 2021; 10 a.m. MDT
American Indian Tourism Conference
American Indian Tourism Conference
October 25-28, 2021
We-Ko-Pa Casino Resort
Fort McDowell (Scottsdale), Arizona
AIANTA Charity Golf Tournament
AIANTA will be holding its Charity Golf Tournament at the We-Ko-Pa Golf Cub on October 24, 2021. This event is being held in advance of AITC.

Participation in this golf tournament provides you with the exclusive opportunity to play golf on one of We-Ko-Pa’s award-winning courses, considered “one of the best golf experiences in the Scottsdale/Phoenix area,” while networking with the top Native American tourism professionals around the country.

AITC Mobile Workshops
During the 23rd annual American Indian Tourism Conference, held in Fort McDowell, Arizona, area tribes will showcase distinctive cultural tourism experiences unique to Arizona. Be sure to come early to AITC to learn more about Native culture and heritage in the Southwest.

Antelope Canyon Navajo Tours
Sea Otter Scarf by Mario Fulmer
AITC Silent Auction
The annual American Indian Tourism Conference concludes with an evening gala, the 10th annual Excellence in Tourism Industry Awards Gala and Silent Auction, which celebrates leading Indigenous visitor destinations and hospitality professionals.

During the gala, the AITC Silent Auction raises funding for AIANTA’s Hospitality and Tourism Scholarship Program, which benefits Native students pursuing post-secondary degrees in Hospitality and Tourism Management and other tourism-related fields. Check out all the amazing items up for auction.

Sponsor AITC 2021
Extend your visibility by sponsoring the 23rd Annual American Indian Tourism Conference, the only national conference dedicated to travel and tourism in Indian Country.

A conference sponsorship helps AIANTA augment its hands-on programming at this annual gathering while providing you and/or your organization with increased exposure through our conference marketing.

2021 AITC Exhibitors
AITC exhibitors are located in a highly trafficked conference area, allowing them to connect directly with AITC attendees and share their marketing and promotional materials.

Register for AITC
Now entering its 23rd year, the annual American Indian Tourism Conference (AITC) is the only national conference dedicated to growing tourism in America’s indigenous communities. Every year the conference attracts more than 300 attendees, who attend for the networking opportunities, the high-level keynote sessions, and the informative breakout sessions led by some of the leading hospitality industry professionals.

Discover Native America
Nez Perce Wallowa Homeland
The Nez Perce Wallowa Homeland stretches across 320 acres of lush, grassy uplands, the traditional summer camping and grazing areas of the Nez Perce people. Rim rock bluffs feature spectacular views of the mountains, and below, the Wallowa River meanders across the pristine land. Located at strategic points of interest within the Homeland, twelve bronze interpretive plaques tell the story of the Wallowa Band of Nez Perce.

Alutiiq Museum & Archaeological Repository
The past meets the present at the Alutiiq Museum where you can explore 7,500 years of Alutiiq heritage. The museum represents 10 tribes of the Kodiak region in Alaska. See ancient artifacts, discover history and learn how Alutiiq traditions continue.

The tribal museum opened in 1995 to preserve and share our story, revitalize traditions and invite all people to celebrate our culture. We invite you to participate in our programs and events and enjoy our Museum Store.

In the News
AIANTA in the News

A Marketing Blueprint for Responsible Travel Emerges for Tackling the Outdoor Tourism Boom
Skift; August 17, 2021
The website, designed as an insider’s local guide for travelers, currently lists 1,050 attractions and small tourism businesses and is the culmination of a geotourism project managed by consulting firm Solimar International, and spearheaded by the National Park Service (NPS), in collaboration with the American Indian Alaskan Native Tourism Association (AIANTA), as well as tourism boards and stakeholders located along the trail.

Re-awakening Summer Tribal Tourism
Native America Calling; August 6, 2021
People are hitting the roads, boarding flights and planning late-summer vacations across the U.S. They are looking forward to traveling after COVID-19 restrictions kept them close to home for months. Native tourism destinations are among the popular places attracting sightseers and tribes, cultural centers, businesses and artists have all felt the economic hit from the pandemic. Some reservations remain closed, but many tribes and Native centers are welcoming tourists back, with some precautions, to help their economic recovery and extend programs, recreation and educational resources to the public.

Travelers Can Connect with People and Places Using the Newly Unveiled Lewis & Clark National Historic Trail Geotourism Online Hub
GISuser; August 3, 2021
The newly launched online portal, which has been created through a Geotourism stewardship program overseen by the National Park Service (NPS), brings together many tourism partners at local, state, and national levels along the Trail, including the American Indian Alaska Native Tourism Association (AIANTA).
Tribal Tourism in the News

September 13, 2021

September 13, 2021

September 10, 2021

September 10, 2021

September 10, 2021

September 10, 2021

September 10, 2021

September 10, 2021

September 9, 2021

September 7, 2021

September 6, 2021

September 1, 2021

September 1, 2021

August 30, 2021

August 27, 2021

August 21, 2021

August 20, 2021

August 20, 2021

August 20, 2021

August 19, 2021

August 19, 2021

August 18, 2021

August 18, 2021

August 18, 2021

August 17, 2021

August 16, 2021

August 16, 2021

August 13, 2021

Has your Tribe or tribal tourism enterprise been featured in the news? 

AIANTA Membership
Welcome New AIANTA Members

SweetGrass Trading Company, Ho-Chunk, Inc. (Tribal Enterprise-Midwest Region)
Culture Story (Native Owned-Alaska Region)
Navajo Nation TV & Film (Native Owned-Southwest Region)
Rt 66 Native Arts Alliance (Nonprofit-Oklahoma Region)

Gail E. Chehak, AIANTA (Senior-Southwest)

AIANTA members are well-informed and play a key role in supporting sustainable and authentic tribal tourism that benefits not only member tribes, but all tribes. With your help, we’ll continue to make sure that the right national decision makers hear your voice—and all our voices—so our people can thrive and grow.

Support AIANTA
Shop AIANTA at

AIANTA has joined the AmazonSmile charitable giving program. After you designate AIANTA as your preferred charitable organization through AmazonSmile, Amazon will contribute .5 percent of all purchases to help support AIANTA programming.
Save the Date
Mark Your Calendars For These Upcoming Events

AIANTA Town Hall Series: Tourism Marketing Initiatives for 2022 and Beyond
September 29, 2021, 1 p.m. (MDT/New Mexico)

23rd Annual American Indian Tourism Conference
Dates: October 25-28, 2021
Location: We-Ko-Pa Casino Resort, Fort McDowell, Arizona
Thank You to our 2021 AITC Sponsors
Get Connected
AIANTA Facebook
NativeAmerica.Travel Facebook
Check out our brand new YouTube page. While you're there, please subscribe!
Funding Opportunities
AIANTA collects funding opportunities that may be of interest to Indigenous or Native American tourism & hospitality enterprises looking to grow their tourism, culture, heritage, arts, agritourism or other culture and heritage programming.
Sign Up Now
Visit our Newsletter Page to sign up to receive AIANTA news and updates.
Meet Our Team
Meet the AIANTA team at
Need Help?
Email to receive more information.