Cabazon Band of Mission Indians


The Cabazon Band of Mission Indians is a federally recognized tribe of Cahuilla Indians, located in Riverside County, California.[1][3]

Cabazon Band of Mission Indians
Total population
38 enrolled members[1]
Regions with significant populations
United States (California)
English, Cahuilla language[2]
traditional tribal religion,
Christianity (Roman Catholicism)
Related ethnic groups
Cahuilla tribes


The Cabazon Indian Reservation was founded in 1876.[3] It occupies 1,706 acres (690 ha) located in Coachella, seven miles (11 km) from Indio, California and 18 miles (29 km) from Palm Springs. Population on the reservation is approximately 806.[1] The Twenty-Nine Palms Reservation is located immediately to its northwest.


The tribe's headquarters is located in Indio, California. Douglas Welmas is their current tribal chairman.[4]

Programs and economic developmentEdit

The Cabazon Band of Mission Indians introduced high-stakes bingo to their state,[1] after they won the pivotal court case, California v. Cabazon Band. The tribe has no unemployment.[3]

The Cabazon Band owns Fantasy Springs Resort Casino, 250 room hotel, POM Restaurant, Pizza Kitchen, The Bistro, Fresh Grill Buffet, JOY Asian Cuisine, a Starbucks, and several casual dining areas, located in Indio.[5] The resort also featured Eagle Falls Golf Course.[6]

The Cabazon Cultural Museum is open to the public, free of admission, Mondays to Saturdays. Since 1981, the tribe has hosted the annual Indio Powwow, with dancing, Cahuilla bird singing, drum competitions, and peon games.[7]


The tribe first came to public attention in 1987 when they won California v. Cabazon Band; however prior to the U.S.Supreme Court's decision 480 U.S. 202 (1987), the tribe had been the subject of public attention, given claims about events involving John Philip Nichols, The Wackenhut Corporation, and the June 29, 1981 triple homicides of Alfred "Fred" Alvarez, Patricia Castro, and Ralph Boger.[8][9]

See alsoEdit


  • Eargle, Jr., Dolan H. California Indian Country: The Land and the People. San Francisco: Tree Company Press, 1992. ISBN 0-937401-20-X.
  • Pritzker, Barry M. A Native American Encyclopedia: History, Culture, and Peoples. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2000. ISBN 978-0-19-513877-1.


  1. ^ a b c d California Indians and Their Reservations. San Diego State University Library and Information Access. 2011. Retrieved 1 Nov 2012.
  2. ^ Eargle, 111
  3. ^ a b c Pritzker, 120
  4. ^ "Cabazon Band elects Douglas Welmas as its new chairman." (retrieved 10 Dec 2014)
  5. ^ "Fantasy Springs Resort Casino." 500 Nations. (retrieved 14 May 2010)
  6. ^ "Golf." Fantasy Springs Resort Casino. 2010 (retrieved 14 May 2010)
  7. ^ "Cabazon Indians." Archived May 28, 2010, at the Wayback Machine Cabazon Band of Mission Indians. 2010 (retrieved 14 May 2010)
  8. ^ Lane, Ambrose I. (1995). Return of the Buffalo: The Story Behind America's Indian Gaming Explosion. Greenwood Publishing Group. pp. 174–175. ISBN 0-89789-433-2. (See section: (iii.) Bua Report, "Riconosciuto's March 29, 1981 (sic) arrest".
  9. ^ Amy Taxin; Gillian Flaccus (2010-01-21). "Arrest in 1981 tribal murders revives old mystery". Newsday. Associated Press. Retrieved 2010-11-25.

Further readingEdit

External linksEdit

  • Cabazon Band of Mission Indians, official website
  • U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Cabazon Reservation
  • U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Cabezon Indian Reservation

Coordinates: 33°41′35″N 116°10′22″W / 33.69306°N 116.17278°W / 33.69306; -116.17278