Tribal lands in North Dakota are being marketed to tourists for the very first time.

It’s all thanks to the North Dakota Native Tourism Alliance, formed just three years ago.

Board President Les Thomas says it’s the first alliance in the country that is made up of members from each of the reservations in the Peace Garden State.

The purpose is to preserve Native culture and to work with the State Tourism Department to build tribal tourism.

Thomas says this initiative is now being used as a model for other states in Washington D.C.

“Every tribe is different here in the state of North Dakota. The five great nations that we have, they all have their own story, and we want to tell the stories from our perspective, from our eyes,” Thomas shared.

He says tourism is the third biggest economic engine in the state, raking in over $3-billion a year.