Friday, August 31, 2007

Legal Poker Gets Closer

This post was inspired by Falstaff's post from yesterday of the news that some counties in West Virginia have legalized table games in their casinos, including poker. This will move legal poker much closer to my home in Charlotte, NC

So just how close has legal poker come to Charlotte?

The short answer is one hell of a lot closer.

When playing poker around the country, I usually get the question, “Where are you from?” Part of my answer usually includes that it is as far as you can get from legal poker in the lower 48 states. I’m not exactly positive where that point really is (or was), but I’m sure it is damn close to Charlotte.

Here is a list of casinos that offer poker and their road distances from Charlotte:

Belterra Casino Resort, Florence, IN 334 mi (7.5 hours of mixed roads)
Casino Aztar, Evansville, IN 419 mi.
Atlantic City Hilton, Atlantic City, NJ 454 mi. (along with many otherAC casinos)
Casino Windsor, Windsor, ON 504
MGM Grand Casino, Detroit, MI 505 mi.
Hard Rock Casino, Tampa, FL 505 mi.
Silver Star Casino, Philadelphia, MS 508 mi. (along with many other Tunica casinos)

By contrast, the new closest place to play will now be:

Tri-State Racetrack & Gaming Center, Sod, WV 283 mi. (4 hours 38 minutes)

So the difference is only about 50 miles, the amount of time it will take to get there is down by a whopping 3 hours.

The other big surprise to me was the relative distance to the Tunica area casinos. I always thought that the distance to legal poker was about equal whether you went north (Atlantic City or AC), South (Florida) or West (Tunica). I really didn't know about the Indiana poker scene until Falstaff went there recently. But I had no idea that Tunica was 50 miles further away than AC. I would have guessed AC was further, and maybe it is by road. No way do I think that Canada and Detroit are closer.

All of the above times and distances are according to my Garmin Nuvi 350, so actual drives times will likely be much lower. Also note that I have not counted gambling boats in this survey. They are a whole different category to me. YMMV. Let the gaming begin, again.

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