Proceeds to Benefit the American Indian Family Center and the Minnesota Wild Foundation
(Welch, MN) — Dec. 1, 2023 — A one-of-a-kind Dakota-inspired mask designed by Dakota artist and Prairie Island Indian Community member Cole Redhorse Taylor and worn by Minnesota Wild goaltender Marc-André Fleury has raised $35,100 at auction.
Fleury, affectionately known as “Flower,” wore the mask during warmups before the Wild celebrated “Native American Heritage Night” at home against the Colorado Avalanche on Friday, November 24. Fleury’s wife, Veronique, is of Abenaki and Mi’kmac heritage.
Fleury and the Wild worked with Redhorse Taylor to create the mask, which features images of water lilies and wild rice. Redhorse Taylor is a prominent Minnesota artist whose work has been displayed at the Minneapolis Institute of Art and elsewhere.
“For the mask, since flowers have a traditional significance in our aesthetics and material culture, I used a floral design,” said Redhorse Taylor. “Afterwards, I learned Marc-André’s nickname is ‘Flower,’ which I think made it the perfect symbol for him to wear. As a community, we are so thankful he wore the mask and that it brought so much attention to our Native people and the adversities we face in this country.”
In addition to the mask, specially designed Native American Heritage jerseys and a custom, hand-beaded Minnesota Wild necklace made by Taylor were up for bid. In total, the auction raised $66,605in support of the Minnesota Wild Foundation and the American Indian Family Center, a St. Paul nonprofit providing mental health, recovery, employment, housing, family and youth services to Minnesota’s Indigenous people.
To thank Fleury for wearing the mask, the Prairie Island Indian Community also announced they will make a donation matching the amount raised from the mask to a charity of the Fleurys’ choice.
“We are so thankful to Mr. Fleury for wearing this beautiful mask designed by Cole in celebration of Indigenous people,” said Prairie Island Indian Community Tribal Council President Johnny Johnson. “As a symbol of our appreciation, it is only right that we gave back in support of a charity that is near and dear to Marc and Veronique’s hearts. The Prairie Island Indian Community and Treasure Island Resort & Casino have partnered with the Minnesota Wild on community giving initiatives for many years, and we’re proud to see that relationship is still growing.”
About Treasure Island Resort & Casino
The Prairie Island Indian Community owns and operates Treasure Island Resort & Casino, Mount Frontenac Golf Course and Dakota Station. Treasure Island Resort & Casino is the only casino in southern Minnesota located on the Mississippi River. The property features more than 1,800 slot, video poker and video keno machines, 44 table games, a poker room and a 500-seat high-stakes bingo hall. Treasure Island’s 788-room hotel is the second-largest hotel in Minnesota. Additional amenities include The Lagoon indoor water park, Wave Spa, Island Xtreme Bowl, Cyber Quest arcade, Kids Quest child care, various restaurants, including fine dining at Tado Steakhouse; a 16,000-seat outdoor amphitheater, a 2,800-seat indoor event and convention center, a 137-slip marina, a 95-site RV park and a 100-passenger yacht. Treasure Island is a proud supporter of local businesses and has continually made a positive impact on the community. Since 1994, Treasure Island Resort & Casino and the Prairie Island Indian Community together have contributed $25 million to hundreds of nonprofit and civic organizations throughout the region. Along with being a consistent contributor to the local economy, Treasure Island is the largest employer in Goodhue County.