As the Ak-Chin Indian Community celebrates its 10th annual Masik Tas celebration, tribal officials remind the community the celebration is about sharing with your neighbors.
Ak-Chin Tribal Council Vice Chairman Gabriel Lopez said it’s always been a tradition to share your bounty with the community.
“What we were taught when we were younger, in any community, is that when you have a good harvest or a good hunt you always share your hunt or your harvest,” Lopez said. “And, that’s the theory behind having everything free.”
The celebration includes several major events including a concert, carnival, rodeo and parade that are free for all, including non-tribal members.
The Masik Tas celebration started 10 years ago when women decided they wanted to expand the tribe’s youth beauty pageant to include young women, Lopez said. They started adding and experimenting with different events until it finally became what it is today.
This year the public celebration will appropriately start with the Miss Ak-Chin and Junior Miss Ak-Chin beauty pageants Dec. 2, followed by the parade Dec. 3, at 7 p.m.
The parade will be a “parade of lights” this year, Lopez said.
Sporting events will also occur the first weekend – Dec. 1-3 – including tournaments for basketball and a native game similar to field hockey known as “Toka.”
Jackpot roping and other rodeo events will take place at various times Dec. 7-10.
Dec. 8, the Carnival and Fun Zone will open at 4 p.m. followed by live music from Clay Walker, Parmalee, Kasey Tyndel and a special mystery guest.
Event dates and times are tentative.
This story appears in the December issue of InMaricopa.