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Casino City’s Friday Five: Iowa sports betting edition

23 Aug 2019

By Dan Ippolito
We have entered crunch time in the National Football League’s preseason. The majority of teams have played three preseason games and have a little over a week to get rosters down to 53 players. That means the regular season is just around the corner, and sports fans and bettors are eager for opening night on 5 September. This football season, another U.S. state will have the opportunity to place wagers, now that Iowa has become the 11th state to accept legal sports bets. Also in headlines this week, we have a jackpot win at a Florida casino, Pennsylvania sportsbooks display record numbers and the first sportsbooks to debut in Indiana in the beginning of September.

The jackpot will start off our week:

5. $486,959 jackpot win at Seminole Hard Rock Hollywood
Turning $10 into nearly half a million is something only a few people can say they've done, but after last weekend, a South Florida resident can be added to the list.

On 16 August, the guest was playing the Lucky Lions slot machine at Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Hollywood when they hit a jackpot for $486,959.

This casino has paid out several jackpots in recent months. Between May and July this year, the casino gave out an average of over $50 million each month in jackpots.

If that isn’t a good enough reason to go, the resort will also be unveiling its $1.5 billion expansion on 24 October.

4. Hollywood Casino Lawrenceburg to debut sports betting in September
Sports betting is coming to Indiana. The Hoosier State will be the 12th U.S. state to begin accepting legal sports bets.

Penn National Gaming announced that Hollywood Casino – Lawrenceburg is going to begin offering sports betting on 5 September.

Timothy J. Wilmott, Chief Executive Officer, commented, “Penn National is excited to soon begin offering sports wagering for our customers in Southeast Indiana. The enthusiasm around sports betting has been growing since the federal ban was repealed last year, and we look forward to providing our patrons with another great amenity to enjoy at our facility.”

Inside the sportsbook will be ticket writer stations, dozens of televisions and kiosks around the facility to give bettors options.

On 7 September, a ribbon-cutting ceremony will be held, with football legend Anthony Munoz and baseball icon Tony Perez participating.

3. Ameristar East Chicago to launch sports betting for Indiana
On 1 September, Ameristar East Chicago will open the first sportsbook in Indiana and begin accepting wagers.

The sportsbook will hold both kiosks and ticket writer stations throughout the venue, which will be near the Stadium Sports Bar and Grill.

“Our customers are very excited to start wagering on sports,” said Matt Schuffert, General Manager at Ameristar Casino East Chicago. “The passion for Indiana and Illinois sports teams runs deep in this region, and we look forward to becoming a destination for fans all year-round.”

Two Chicago Bears legends, Mike Ditka and Devin Hester, place the first wagers at the sportsbook.

2. Pennsylvania online sportsbooks take in majority of action for first time
Online sportsbooks accounted for the majority of the Keystone State’s bets for the first time last month.

In July, online and retail sportsbooks combined to generate $59.3 million in bets. Online sports betting generated $39 million in bets, up from $19.3 million in June. This shows that 65.7% of all bets were placed online, marking the first time it has outweighed in-person betting in Pennsylvania.

"Simply put, increased online accessibility drives traffic," said Jessica Welman, sports betting analyst for "Pennsylvania could have as many as six online sportsbooks operating by the beginning of the football season, and some apps have worked out their Apple issues and are now in the App Store. Add in the natural boost that comes from football season, and Pennsylvania's sportsbooks are about to take a giant leap forward."

1. William Hill launches mobile sports betting app in Iowa
After Iowa became the 11th U.S. state to accept sports wagers last week, William Hill has announced the introduction of a mobile sports betting app for the state.

On 15 August, William Hill opened retail sportsbooks at Prairie Meadows Racetrack and Casino, Lakeside Hotel Casino, Isle Casino Hotel - Bettendorf, and Isle Casino Hotel - Waterloo. Now, the company is going to be the first to have a mobile sports betting app in the state.

When fans download the app, they just need to fill out the steps in the app and visit a William Hill sportsbook in Iowa to complete their registration and make the first deposit.

“We know Iowa sports fans are looking for both an in-person sports betting experience as well as the convenience of betting on their mobile devices. The William Hill Iowa app gives our customers the ability to access our full sports betting menu from anywhere in the state,” said Joe Asher, CEO of William Hill U.S.
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