• Twitter
  • Facebook
News-Sentinel.com Your Town. Your Voice.
Opening Arguments

Tough choices

Didn't realize the economy was quite this bad:

The pressures of a weak economy — concerns about job security and rising prices for gas, food, home heating oil and other goods and services — are causing many gamblers to cancel or reduce the number of casino trips. Those who go are gambling less money than in the past: At the traditional gambling Meccas of Atlantic City and Las Vegas, and in other states, casino revenue is down. Employees are being laid off, and there's concern about future growth.

Gallon of milk or gallon of gas? Pay the rent or take one more trip to Vegas? Life is tough.

Posted in: Current Affairs


Harl Delos
Fri, 05/09/2008 - 1:49pm

Can't tell you about Las Vegas, but you can't blame Atlantic City entirely on the economy. Pennsylvania recently legalized slots parlors, and they're doing well; one of them, open less than a year, with 2000 one-armed bandits, just announced an expansion that will make it 2-3 times as big as the original parlor.

Atlantic City has always treated slots players as a nuisance; they're trying very hard to get the "whales" to come in. But while slots aren't very glamorous, grandma just sits there, hour after hour, throwing quarters down the gaping maw of that box, and it adds up; more than half the profit of a casino comes from slots machines. Or, at least it used to.

The only other kind of gambling at a Pennsylvania slots parlor is horse racing. (The tracks are the only ones being given licenses.) Consequently, they treat their slots players like royalty.

It used to be $25 to take the bus to Atlantic City, and they'd give you a $20 rebate when you got off the bus. It's now $42.50, and they give you a $10 rebate. Business is down enough that instead of 14 trips a week to Atlantic City, the bus company is offering 3 trips. They're using the busses to head for slots parlors instead. "No rebate, but man, they really make you feel welcome", the lady across the street says.

Blondie and I used to take the bus to Atlantic City once in a while. We'd go out and walk the boardwalk, wiggle our feet in the sand, watch the waves, and spend the $20 rebate on a nice restaurant meal. Gambling? Nah. They don't have euchre in the casinos, so we're not interested. And the slots parlors aren't at the ocean, so we're not interested in them, either.

There used to be sexy women at the casinos, but the Borgata officially started firing any of them that developed curves and unofficially started getting rid of any of them over about 25 or so, and then all the others decided to follow suit. My wife says "Look but don't touch", but when they look like 14-year-old boys, I don't even bother looking.

Bob G.
Sat, 05/10/2008 - 12:06pm

DAMN...time I changed. I remember those buses leaving the parking lots in the NE...and the buffet coupon was worththe trip!
But $42.50....with ONLY a $10 "rebate"???
Gimme a break!

Interestingly enough, in SPITE of ALL the revenue sucked up BY those casinos (over the years)...you can STILL walk a mere TWO blocks AWAY from them and be "in the ghetto".
Amazing, isn't it?