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Casino City’s Friday Five: Jackpots, openings and sports betting edition

25 Aug 2023

By Dan Ippolito
Kentucky moved a step closer to sports betting as The Bluegrass State issued licenses for both land-based and online sportsbooks. There’s also sports wagering news in Las Vegas, as The Venetian Las Vegas opened a new Yahoo Sportsbook. In addition, this week there’s also several jackpot winners, a new sports bar in Las Vegas, and Australia is launching its self-exclusion program.

Let’s begin today with a few lucky winners:

5. Jackpot winners out of Pennsylvania and Las Vegas
A guest turned a visit to Valley Forge Casino Resort in Pennsylvania into a payday on 29 July, after hitting the Grand Progressive Jackpot on the Lightning Cash slot machine by Aristocrat Gaming.

The winner, who wishes to remain anonymous, took home a payday of $100,725.

Move over to the Las Vegas Strip, and there are a couple of pay days. On the morning of 21 August, a Caesars Rewards guest, Nicholas Isaac of Dunwoody, Georgia, won a major progressive jackpot of $135,227 while playing Ultimate Texas Hold’em at Harrah's Las Vegas Casino & Hotel. Isaac plans to purchase a new car with his winnings.

Just a few days earlier on 18 August, another Caesars Rewards member won five slot jackpots totaling $1,052,500 at Caesars Palace. The next day, the same guest won another five slot jackpots totaling $1,020,331. The guest’s total payday for the weekend was a whopping $2,072,831.

Ten jackpots in less than two days? Talk about luck, as many would love to hit just one.

4. Boulder Station’s Game On opens today
Just in time for football season, Boulder Station Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas is opening its sports bar and grill, Game On, today at 11 a.m.

With an 8,000-square-foot floor plan, plenty of seating, and nearly 60 screens, every seat in the house will offer unobstructed views. The center bar, featuring 16 seats, offers bar top games, while the nine-seat side bar offers additional seating, dedicated screens, and a selection of food and beer options.

Game On also features games galore with room for beer pong, foosball, tabletop shuffle board and Golden Tee.

3. Australia launches new national self-exclusion program
As of earlier this week, Australians who are at risk of experiencing gambling harm are now able to self-exclude from all licensed interacting wagering services following the launch of BetStop.

BetStop covers all Australian licensed interactive wagering service providers, and will mean they are not allowed to open an account or accept a bet from self-excluded individuals, or send them marketing material.

Australians will be able to self-exclude from a minimum of three months to a lifetime, by registering free-of-charge and in a single interaction.

Wagering service providers must promote BetStop, including on their websites and apps, and via marketing material to customers.

2. Yahoo Sportsbook powered by William Hill now open at The Venetian in Las Vegas
Yesterday, The Venetian Las Vegas and Yahoo announced a multi-year naming rights partnership for the Yahoo Sportsbook powered by William Hill on The Venetian casino floor.

The venue spans more than 12,000 square feet and features a 46-million-pixel, 1,770-square foot LED video wall that can display up to 40 independent sporting events at once. There are also an additional 30 TVs spread throughout the sportsbook.

Sofas and lounge chairs provide seating for 105, and for guests looking for an elevated group viewing experience, there are two Fan Caves available. The Yahoo Fan Caves provide everything needed for a gameday viewing experience, including two 98-inch UHD 4K guest-controlled displays, food and beverage service, and seating for eight or 12.

1. Kentucky approves temporary sports wagering licenses
On Tuesday, Governor Andy Beshear announced that the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission voted to approve temporary licenses for sports wagering operators and service providers.

The following Kentucky racetracks and their satellite facilities were approved to open a sportsbook with a planned retail opening on Thursday, 7 September:
- Churchill Downs, Louisville
- Derby City Gaming, Louisville
- Ellis Park, Henderson
- The Mint Gaming Hall Cumberland Run, Corbin
- The Mint Gaming Hall Cumberland, Williamsburg
- Newport Racing & Gaming, Newport
- Oak Grove Racing, Gaming and Hotel, Oak Grove
- The Red Mile Gaming & Racing, Lexington
- Turfway Park Racing and Gaming, Florence

The service providers licensed to operate a mobile sports wagering application starting on Thursday, 28 September are:
- bet365 Sportsbook & Racebook
- BetMGM
- Caesars Sportsbook
- Circa Sports
- DraftKings Sportsbook
- Fanatics
- FanDuel
- Penn Sports Interactive

Sports wagering is expected to increase the state’s revenue by an estimated $23 million a year upon full implementation.
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