BRISTOL, Va. — Guests and community members placed their bets at the temporary Bristol Casino throughout its first week of operations to the tune of more than $37 million.
Gamblers wagered $37,514,972 at the Bristol Casino between July 5 and July 14, according to the Virginia Lottery. The casino’s slots saw $34,577,021 of the more than $37 million while table games brought in $2,937,950 in cash played.
“This is just one week into gaming,” said Gina Smith, the Virginia Lottery’s deputy executive director, during a presentation to the lottery group. “I thought it was important to see. And what’s really important is the (adjusted gross revenue) and taxes are at almost $700,000 to the commonwealth after just the week.”
Cash won throughout July 5-14 totaled $33,770,927, with $31,229,061 from slots and $2,541,865 from table games, the presentation stated. According to the lottery, the adjusted gross revenue, which is the total amount of wagers minus total winnings and other authorized deductions, resulted in $3,744,044, and the tax collected (at 18%) tallied $673,928.
The Bristol Casino also donated $100,000 to the United Way of Bristol TN/VA from its two soft opening dates held prior to the grand opening. The donation was added with the figures listed.
The Bristol Casino has also identified 26 Virginia-based companies and 45 small, minority and women-owned businesses for potential business, according to the Virginia Lottery.
“They have all along been engaging with the local community, but they’re still trying to figure out what food works, what doesn’t,” Smith said. “It’s going to be growing pains until they figure out exactly what it is that makes them good for the area. They have been out in the community, they are well-respected in the community. … Everyone in Bristol is really, really excited. I do believe in the long term they will do well.”
Smith also said the Bristol Casino currently includes 544 employees from food and beverage roles to security. She said the local workforce mostly makes up the roles you see on the casino floor, such as table dealers, bartenders and promotion employees.
“Being out and about, these individuals are thrilled to have these jobs,” Smith said. “This is huge for them. They are very excited, and the energy in that casino is amazing. I hope it holds up because the casino is a rough business to work in. But they are energized right now.”