Lac Vieux Desert tribe announces temporary changes to business operations

The Lac Vieux Desert Health Center as seen on its grand opening day in September 2016. (WLUC Photo)

WATERSMEET, Mich. (WLUC) - On March 17, 2020, the Lac Vieux Desert Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians (“LVD”) declared a Tribal State of Emergency as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

At that time, LVD instituted several precautionary measures to combat the spread of the virus; however, the continuing threat of COVID-19 and the protection of the health, safety, and welfare of Tribal Members, guests, employees and community members, now requires the following temporary changes to business operations:

• The LVD Northern Waters Casino Resort, Sugarbush Restaurant, Northern Waters Café, and Northern Waters Sports Bar will close to the public Saturday, March 21, 2020 at 11:59 p.m. and will tentatively re-open at 7:00 a.m. on Saturday, April 11, 2020. All hotel guests will be required to check out March 21, 2020. No new reservations will be accepted at this time. Any reservations scheduled between Saturday, March 21, 2020 and Friday, April 10, 2020 will be canceled. Select LVD Northern Waters Casino Resort essential staff will continue to report or work remotely.

• All events scheduled at the LVD Northern Waters Casino Resort for March and April 2020 as well as gaming promotions are canceled.

• The Cenex Convenience Store will remain open 7 days a week from 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.

• Beginning March 23, 2020, LVD Government Offices will reduce government operations and modify program staffing in order to implement recommended social distancing while maintaining essential government services for Tribal Members. Many employees will work remotely.

• Please call ahead before visiting LVD Government Offices and the LVD Tribal Court for availability and hours of operation. Pre-screening will be required before entering.

• The Gathering Place is closed to visitors. Elders meals will still be provided.

• The LVD Boys and Girls Club/Rec Center facility is closed except for pre-packaged school lunches and breakfasts available Wednesdays Noon to 2:00 p.m. and carry out hot lunch available Thursdays Noon to 2:00 p.m. Virtual learning opportunities will be offered soon. Stay tuned for more information.

• The LVD Health Center – Watersmeet location will continue to provide essential medical, dental and behavioral health services. Virtual medical, pharmacy and behavioral health visits will begin March 23, 2020 along with curb side prescription pick up and no cost mail order prescriptions. Optical and chiropractic services are suspended until further notice. Pre-screening will be required before entering the facility. All nonessential appointments will be rescheduled. Please contact the LVD Health Center for more information.

• The LVD Health Center – Eagle River, Wisconsin, location will remain open and continue to provide essential medical visits. Virtual medical visits will be available beginning March 23, 2020. Pre-screening will be required before entering the facility.

• LVD Tribal Police will continue 24-hour service.

Affected LVD Tribal Government, Health Center and Northern Waters Casino Resort employees will be furloughed during the shutdown. LVD will continue to pay for eligible employee health benefits at this time.

“This was an extremely difficult decision for my Tribal Council,” said James Williams, Jr., Tribal Chairman. "But we are ultimately responsible for the health and safety of our Tribal Members, this community, our patrons and our employees and we have to take steps to protect everyone.”

For continuing coronavirus coverage, visit

Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station. powered by Disqus