Fort McDowell Orme Dam Victory Days Pow Wow

Fort McDowell Yavapai Nation

Each November, the Fort McDowell Yavapai Nation in Arizona celebrates their 1981 victory over the federal government, who proposed to construct the Orme Dam at the confluence of the Verde and Salt Rivers. The project would have flooded the reservation and relocated the Yavapai people. With limited financial resources, individuals from the community spearheaded an opposition movement that rallied the support of fellow tribal members, other Indian tribes and non-Indian groups.

By referendum in 1976, the community members voted 144 to 57 against selling their land to the federal government for the dam site. Then on November 12, 1981, after consulting with the Fort McDowell Tribal Council and the Governor's Advisory Committee, Interior Secretary James Watt announced that Orme Dam would not be built.

The annual victory celebration includes:

  • Intertribal Powwow
  • All-Indian Rodeo
  • Basketball, softball, and golf tournaments
  • Yavapai Village, showcasing cultural performances from different tribes of the Southwest
  • Arts and crafts vendors
  • Authentic native food vendors

This year’s event will be held November 16-18, 2018, at the Fort McDowell Rodeo Grounds located on Hwy. 87 about 3 miles east of Shea Blvd.


Fort McDowell Orme Dam Victory Days Pow Wow card image

Quick Facts

  • Location: Beeline Highway (Hwy. 87) and Fort McDowell Road, Fort McDowell, Ariz.
  • $5 parking fee with free admission to all events
  • No drugs/alcohol permitted
  • Bring your own chairs

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We-Ko-Pa Golf Club Fort McDowell, Arizona (480) 836-9000 wekopa.com
Fort McDowell Casino Fort McDowell, Arizona (800) 843-3678 fortmcdowellcasino.com
Eagle View RV Resort Fort McDowel, Arizona (480) 789-5310 eagleviewrvresort.com
Fort McDowell Adventures Fort McDowell, Arizona 480-789-5306 fortmcdowelladventures.com
Poco Diablo Resort Sedona, Arizona (928) 282-7333 PocoDiablo.com
We-Ko-Pa Resort and Conference Center Scottsdale, Arizona 480-789-5300 wekoparesortandconferencecenter.com

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