September 26, 2022 Casino, Tribal, Land Based

Nebraska opens first state-licensed casino

By

The opening at WarHorse Casino Lincoln drew in crowds of hundreds.

Nebraska opened its first state-licensed casino last weekend, with an inaugural pull slot in WarHorse Casino Lincoln marking this historic moment. Tribal Elder and member of the Winnebago Tribe of Nebraska's Tribal Council, Ken Mallory, was among the first to play a slot machine in the casino.

Mallory was heard to joke: “What's the difference between praying at church and praying at the casino? At the casino you really mean it."

The queue increased as the day went on, with approximately 150 people lining up by 11AM. The Warhorse is a temporary casino with an 850-capacity building and its parking lots were filled, leading to staff opening up overflow spaces to accommodate the waiting crowd.

Nebraska Horsemen COO Lori Thomas said that the excitement in the room was palpable as attendees celebrated this landmark moment in Nebraska’s gambling history. She even gave a high five to one patron, Holly Glasgow, as she raked in her winnings on Huff N’ Puff, a slot machine game.

Glasgow commented: “I have been waiting to play this machine for so long. I wanted to be the first one to play and win in the state of Nebraska."

Thomas remarked: “We've worked so hard to get to this day that it's unbelievable, it's a dream come true. For us, it's about bringing a new source of revenue to Nebraska. Watching all these people be happy is just the icing on the cake."

The Nebraska Racing and Gaming Commission granted WarHorse Lincoln its license last Friday, a historic vote coming nearly two years after voters in the state approved casinos at state-licensed horseracing tracks.

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