Published Articles

Frank’s Landing

Franks Landing

In 2008, Island Enterprises began running a new store,  The Landing.  Through an historic partnership between the Frank’s Landing Indian Community and the Squaxin Island Tribe, the new smokeshop business is owned and operated by the Squaxin Island Tribe for the benefit of the Frank’s Landing Indian Community, particularly the Wa He Lut Indian School. This alliance has allowed the Landing’s renowned support for vital community services to continue unabated.

The former Frank’s Landing Indian Trade Center, located on the lower Nisqually River near Interstate-5 Exit 114, has reopened its doors as “Frank’s Landing.” 

The Frank’s Landing Indian Community is known across the nation for its generations of work on behalf of the tribal people of the south Sound and elsewhere.  The community was at the center of the decades-long fishing disputes that led to the famous Boldt federal court decision of 1974 and its reaffirmation of the treaty rights fisheries reserved and secured to native peoples of the area.

Presently the Frank’s Landing community operates Wa He Lut Indian School – founded in 1974 – where children from 26 federally recognized Indian Tribes come to learn traditional ways as part of a well-rounded education.  Wa He Lut is a place where children are encouraged to believe in themselves and their abilities and to celebrate their native heritage.  Class size is never greater than 18, thereby giving the children the personal educational attention they deserve.

The Frank’s Landing Indian Community also provides – through the auspices of its non-profit Alesek Institute – multi-service support for Native people with particular concern for Indian children and their families. The Alesek Institute offers culturally appropriate life skills training, education assistance, employment opportunities, youth tutoring and housing assistance at sites throughout western Washington.

The community also sponsors and supports many other organizations, events and activities which involve, support and benefit Indian Elders, children and families.

“Frank’s Landing” features products manufactured by Skookum Creek Tobacco as well as all major brands.  Skookum Creek is another economic development enterprise owned by the Squaxin Island Tribe and managed by  Island Enterprises Inc.   Taxes collected from the sale of these products, as required by the cigarette excise tax compact legislation, are dedicated to support the Wa He Lut Indian School, the Alesek Institute and other essential governmental services.

The opening of “Frank’s Landing” coincided with the ten-year, January 1998 anniversary of the Wa He Lut school’s reconstruction and grand reopening which followed its near total

destruction by valley-wide flooding on February 8, 1996.  That January, once again, marked

a rebirth and renewal for the Frank’s Landing Indian Community.