Blackjack is the American variant of a globally popular banking game known as Twenty-One, whose relatives include Pontoon and Vingt-et-Un. It is a comparing card game between several players and a dealer, where each player in turn competes against the dealer, but players do not play against each other, it is played with one or more decks of 52 cards, is the most played casino banking game in the world. The objective of the game is to beat the dealer in one of the following ways: Get 21 points on the player's first two cards, without a dealer blackjack. Players are each dealt two cards, face up or down depending on the casino and the table at which you sit. In the U. S. the dealer is dealt two cards one up and one down. In most other countries, the dealer receives one card face up; the value of cards two through ten is their pip value. Face cards are all worth ten. Aces can be worth eleven. A hand's value is the sum of the card values. Players are allowed to draw additional cards to improve their hands.
A hand with an ace valued as 11 is called "soft", meaning that the hand will not bust by taking an additional card. Otherwise, the hand is "hard". Once all the players have completed their hands, it is the dealer’s turn; the dealer hand will not be completed if all players have either received blackjacks. The dealer reveals the hidden card and must hit until the cards total 17 or more points. Players win by not busting and having a total higher than the dealer, or not busting and having the dealer bust, or getting a blackjack without the dealer getting a blackjack. If the player and dealer have the same total, this is called a "push", the player does not win or lose money on that hand. Otherwise, the dealer wins. Blackjack has many rule variations. Since the 1960s, blackjack has been a high-profile target of advantage players card counters, who track the profile of cards that have been dealt and adapt their wagers and playing strategies accordingly. Blackjack has inspired other casino games, including pontoon.
Blackjack's precursor was a game of unknown origin. The first written reference is found in a book by the Spanish author Miguel de Cervantes, most famous for writing Don Quixote. Cervantes was a gambler, the main characters of his tale "Rinconete y Cortadillo", from Novelas Ejemplares, are a couple of cheats working in Seville, they are proficient at cheating at veintiuna, state that the object of the game is to reach 21 points without going over and that the ace values 1 or 11. The game is played with the Spanish baraja deck; this short story was written between 1601 and 1602, implying that ventiuna was played in Castile since the beginning of the 17th century or earlier. References to this game are found in France and Spain; when twenty-one was introduced in the United States, gambling houses offered bonus payouts to stimulate players' interest. One such bonus was a ten-to-one payout if the player's hand consisted of the ace of spades and a black jack; this hand was called a "blackjack", the name stuck to the game though the ten-to-one bonus was soon withdrawn.
In the modern game, a blackjack refers to any hand of an ace plus a ten or face card regardless of suits or colors. The first scientific and mathematically sound attempt to devise an optimal blackjack playing strategy was revealed in September 1956. Roger Baldwin, Wilbert Cantey, Herbert Maisel and James McDermott published a paper titled The Optimum Strategy in Blackjack in the Journal of the American Statistical Association; this paper would become the foundation of all future sound efforts to beat the game of blackjack. Ed Thorp would use Baldwin’s hand calculations to verify the basic strategy and publish his famous book Beat the Dealer. At a casino blackjack table, the dealer faces five to seven playing positions from behind a semicircular table. Between one and eight standard 52-card decks are shuffled together. At the beginning of each round, up to three players can place their bets in the "betting box" at each position in play; that is, there could be up to three players at each position at a table in jurisdictions that allow back betting.
The player whose bet is at the front of the betting box is deemed to have control over the position, the dealer will consult the controlling player for playing decisions regarding the hand. Any player is allowed to control or bet in as many boxes as desired at a single table, but it is prohibited for an individual to play on more than one table at a time or to place multiple bets within a single box. In many U. S. casinos, players are limited to playing two or three positions at a table and only one person is allowed to bet on each position. The dealer deals cards from his/her left to his/her far right; each box is dealt an initial hand of two cards visible to the people playing on it, to any other players. The dealer's hand receives its first card face up, in "hole card" games receives its second card face down, which the dealer peeks at but does not reveal unless it makes the dealer's hand
A game is a structured form of play undertaken for enjoyment and sometimes used as an educational tool. Games are distinct from work, carried out for remuneration, from art, more an expression of aesthetic or ideological elements. However, the distinction is not clear-cut, many games are considered to be work or art. Games are sometimes played purely sometimes for achievement or reward as well, they can be played alone, in online. The players may have an audience of non-players, such as when people are entertained by watching a chess championship. On the other hand, players in a game may constitute their own audience as they take their turn to play. Part of the entertainment for children playing a game is deciding, part of their audience and, a player. Key components of games are goals, rules and interaction. Games involve mental or physical stimulation, both. Many games help develop practical skills, serve as a form of exercise, or otherwise perform an educational, simulational, or psychological role.
Attested as early as 2600 BC, games are a universal part of human experience and present in all cultures. The Royal Game of Ur, Mancala are some of the oldest known games. Ludwig Wittgenstein was the first academic philosopher to address the definition of the word game. In his Philosophical Investigations, Wittgenstein argued that the elements of games, such as play and competition, all fail to adequately define what games are. From this, Wittgenstein concluded that people apply the term game to a range of disparate human activities that bear to one another only what one might call family resemblances; as the following game definitions show, this conclusion was not a final one and today many philosophers, like Thomas Hurka, think that Wittgenstein was wrong and that Bernard Suits' definition is a good answer to the problem. French sociologist Roger Caillois, in his book Les jeux et les hommes, defined a game as an activity that must have the following characteristics: fun: the activity is chosen for its light-hearted character separate: it is circumscribed in time and place uncertain: the outcome of the activity is unforeseeable non-productive: participation does not accomplish anything useful governed by rules: the activity has rules that are different from everyday life fictitious: it is accompanied by the awareness of a different reality Computer game designer Chris Crawford, founder of The Journal of Computer Game Design, has attempted to define the term game using a series of dichotomies: Creative expression is art if made for its own beauty, entertainment if made for money.
A piece of entertainment is a plaything. Movies and books are cited as examples of non-interactive entertainment. If no goals are associated with a plaything, it is a toy. If it has goals, a plaything is a challenge. If a challenge has no "active agent against whom you compete", it is a puzzle. If the player can only outperform the opponent, but not attack them to interfere with their performance, the conflict is a competition. However, if attacks are allowed the conflict qualifies as a game. Crawford's definition may thus be rendered as: an interactive, goal-oriented activity made for money, with active agents to play against, in which players can interfere with each other. "A game is a system in which players engage in an artificial conflict, defined by rules, that results in a quantifiable outcome." "A game is a form of art in which participants, termed players, make decisions in order to manage resources through game tokens in the pursuit of a goal." According to this definition, some "games" that do not involve choices, such as Chutes and Ladders, Candy Land, War are not technically games any more than a slot machine is.
"A game is an activity among two or more independent decision-makers seeking to achieve their objectives in some limiting context." "At its most elementary level we can define game as an exercise of voluntary control systems in which there is an opposition between forces, confined by a procedure and rules in order to produce a disequilibrial outcome." "A game is a form of play with goals and structure." "to play a game is to engage in activity directed toward bringing about a specific state of affairs, using only means permitted by specific rules, where the means permitted by the rules are more limited in scope than they would be in the absence of the rules, where the sole reason for accepting such limitation is to make possible such activity." "When you strip away the genre differences and the technological complexities, all games share four defining traits: a goal, rules, a feedback system, voluntary participation." Games can be characterized by "what the player does". This is referred to as gameplay.
Major key elements identified in this context are tools and rules that define the overall context of game. Games are classified by the com
Roulette is a casino game named after the French word meaning little wheel. In the game, players may choose to place bets on either a single number, various groupings of numbers, the colors red or black, whether the number is odd or or if the numbers are high or low. To determine the winning number and color, a croupier spins a wheel in one direction spins a ball in the opposite direction around a tilted circular track running around the outer edge of the wheel; the ball loses momentum, passes through an area of deflectors, falls onto the wheel and into one of 37 or 38 colored and numbered pockets on the wheel. The first form of roulette was devised in 18th century France. Many historians believe Blaise Pascal introduced a primitive form of roulette in the 17th century in his search for a perpetual motion machine; the roulette mechanism is a hybrid of a gaming wheel invented in the Italian game Biribi. The game has been played in its present form since as early as 1796 in Paris. An early description of the roulette game in its current form is found in a French novel La Roulette, ou le Jour by Jaques Lablee, which describes a roulette wheel in the Palais Royal in Paris in 1796.
The description included the house pockets, "There are two slots reserved for the bank, whence it derives its sole mathematical advantage." It goes on to describe the layout with, "...two betting spaces containing the bank's two numbers and double zero". The book was published in 1801. An earlier reference to a game of this name was published in regulations for New France in 1758, which banned the games of "dice, hoca and roulette"; the roulette wheels used in the casinos of Paris in the late 1790s had red for the single zero and black for the double zero. To avoid confusion, the color green was selected for the zeros in roulette wheels starting in the 1800s. In 1843, in the German spa casino town of Bad Homburg, fellow Frenchmen François and Louis Blanc introduced the single 0 style roulette wheel in order to compete against other casinos offering the traditional wheel with single and double zero house pockets. In some forms of early American roulette wheels, there were numbers 1 through 28, plus a single zero, a double zero, an American Eagle.
The Eagle slot, a symbol of American liberty, was a house slot that brought the casino extra edge. Soon, the tradition vanished and since the wheel features only numbered slots. According to Hoyle "the single 0, the double 0, eagle are never bars. In the 19th century, roulette spread all over Europe and the US, becoming one of the most famous and most popular casino games; when the German government abolished gambling in the 1860s, the Blanc family moved to the last legal remaining casino operation in Europe at Monte Carlo, where they established a gambling mecca for the elite of Europe. It was here that the single zero roulette wheel became the premier game, over the years was exported around the world, except in the United States where the double zero wheel had remained dominant. In the United States, the French double zero wheel made its way up the Mississippi from New Orleans, westward, it was here, because of rampant cheating by both operators and gamblers, that the wheel was placed on top of the table to prevent devices being hidden in the table or wheel, the betting layout was simplified.
This evolved into the American-style roulette game. The American game was developed in the gambling dens across the new territories where makeshift games had been set up, whereas the French game evolved with style and leisure in Monte Carlo. During the first part of the 20th century, the only casino towns of note were Monte Carlo with the traditional single zero French wheel, Las Vegas with the American double zero wheel. In the 1970s, casinos began to flourish around the world. By 2008, there were several hundred casinos worldwide offering roulette games; the double zero wheel is found in the U. S. Canada, South America, the Caribbean, while the single zero wheel is predominant elsewhere. In 2016, The Venetian Las Vegas introduced the first triple-zero wheel, which has since spread to a few additional casinos; the sum of all the numbers on the roulette wheel is 666, the "Number of the Beast". Roulette players have a variety of betting options. Placing inside bets is either selecting the exact number of the pocket the ball will land in, or a small range of pockets based on their proximity on the layout.
Players wishing to bet on the'outside' will select bets on larger positional groupings of pockets, the pocket color, or whether the winning number is odd or even. The payout odds for each type of bet are based on its probability; the roulette table imposes minimum and maximum bets, these rules apply separately for all of a player's inside and outside bets for each spin. For inside bets at roulette tables, some casinos may use separate roulette table chips of various colors to distinguish players at the table. Players can continue to place bets as the ball spins around the wheel until the dealer announces no more bets or rien ne va plus; when a winning number and color is determined by the roulette wheel, the dealer will place a marker known as a dolly, on that winning number on the roulette table layout. When the dolly is on the table, no players may place bets, collect bets, or remove any bets from the table; the dealer will sweep away all other l
In the United States, Bingo is a game of chance in which each player matches numbers printed in different arrangements on 5×5 cards which the numbers the game host draws at random, marking the selected numbers with tiles. When a player finds the selected numbers are arranged on their card in a row, they call out "Bingo!" to alert all participants to a winning card, which prompts the game host to examine the card for verification of the win. Players compete against one another to be the first to have a winning arrangement for the prize or jackpot. After a winner is declared, the players clear their number cards of the tiles and the game host begins a new round of play. Alternative methods of play try to increase participation by creating excitement. Since its invention in 1929, modern bingo has evolved into multiple variations, with each jurisdiction's gambling laws regulating how the game is played. There are nearly unlimited patterns that may be specified for play; some games require only one number to be matched, while cover-all games award the jackpot for covering an entire card.
There are games that award prizes to players for matching no numbers or achieving no pattern. The most common Bingo cards are flat pieces of cardboard or disposable paper which contain 25 squares arranged in five vertical columns and five side to side rows; each space in the grid contains a number. A typical Bingo game utilizes the numbers 1 through 75; the five columns of the card are labeled ` I','N', ` G', ` O' from left to right. The center space is marked "Free" or "Free Space", is considered automatically filled; the range of printed numbers that can appear on the card is restricted by column, with the'B' column only containing numbers between 1 and 15 inclusive, the'I' column containing only 16 through 30,'N' containing 31 through 45,'G' containing 46 through 60, and'O' containing 61 through 75. The number of all possible Bingo cards with these standard features is P × P × P × P × P = 552,446,474,061,128,648,601,600,000 or 5.52×1026. In U-Pick'Em bingo and other variants of bingo, players are issued three 25 number cards which contain all 75 numbers that may be drawn.
Players mark which numbers they wish to play and daub those numbers according to the numbers drawn. In addition, double-action cards have two numbers in each square. A player wins by completing column, or diagonal; the most chips one can place on a Bingo board without having a Bingo is 19, not counting the free space. In order for this to happen, only one empty cell can reside in each row and each column, at least one empty cell must be in each diagonal, for instance: In addition to a straight line, other patterns may be considered a valid bingo in special games. For example, in the illustration above, the 2×2 square of marked squares in the upper-right-hand corner would be considered a "postage stamp". Another common special game requires players to cover the four corners. There are several other patterns, such as a Roving'L', which requires players to cover all B's and top or bottom row or all O's and top or bottom row. Another common pattern is a blackout, covering all the free space; the numbers that are called in a game of bingo may be drawn utilizing a variety of methods to randomly generate the ball call.
With the expansion of computer technology in bingo, electronic random number generators are now commonplace in most jurisdictions. However, some jurisdictions require mechanical ball draws which may utilize a randomly shuffled deck of bingo calling cards, a mechanical ball blower that mixes ping pong balls with blown air or a cage, turned to mix small wooden balls. All methods generate a random string of numbers which players match to their bingo cards. Single games have multiple bingos. Players play multiple cards for each game; because of the large numbers of cards played by each player, most halls have the players sit at tables to which they fasten their cards with adhesive tape. To mark cards faster the players use special markers called daubers. At commercial halls, after calling the number the caller displays the next number on a television monitor. Bingo is used as an instructional tool in American schools and in teaching English as a foreign language in many countries; the numbers are replaced with beginning reader words, pictures, or unsolved math problems.
Ready/Waiting/Cased/Set/Down/Chance – A player who only needs one number in order to complete the Bingo pattern is considered to be Ready, Cased, Set, or Down, or to "have a chance". Breaking the Bubble or "Possible" – The bubble is the minimum number of balls required to complete the Bingo pattern; this is the earliest point. Example: Winning pattern is 1 hard way bingo, a straight line without the free space; the minimum number of called numbers is five although it is not considered Breaking the Bubble or possible until one number in each column or four/five numbers in a single column have been called. Jumping the Gun – One who calls bingo before having a valid bingo; the most common situation is someone calling bingo using the next number in the screen before it has been called. Wild numbers – Many bingo halls will have certain games with a wild number. Wild numbers allow bingo players to start with multiple called numbers; the first ball drawn is the determining factor. Standard – A
The New York Observer
The New York Observer was a weekly newspaper printed from 1987 to 2016, when it ceased print publication and became the online-only newspaper Observer. The media site focuses on culture, real estate, media and the entertainment and publishing industries; as of January 2017, the editorial team is led by managing editor Merin Curotto, has featured other writers and editors including Rex Reed, Will Bredderman, Drew Grant, Brady Dale, John Bonazzo, Vinnie Mancuso, James Jorden. The Observer was first published in New York City on September 22, 1987, as a weekly newspaper by Arthur L. Carter, a former investment banker; the New York Observer had been the name of an earlier weekly religious paper founded by Sidney E. Morse in 1823. In July 2006, the paper was purchased by the American real estate figure Jared Kushner 25 years old; the paper began its life as a broadsheet, was printed in tabloid format every Wednesday, has an online format. It is headquartered at 1 Whitehall Street in Manhattan. Previous writers for the publication include Kara Bloomgarden–Smoke, Kim Velsey, Matthew Kassel, Jillian Jorgensen, Joe Conason, Doree Shafrir, Hilton Kramer, Andrew Sarris, Richard Brookhiser, Michael Tomasky, Azi Paybarah, Ross Barkan, John Heilpern, Robert Gottlieb, Foster Kamer, Nicholas von Hoffman, Simon Doonan, Anne Roiphe, Terry Golway, Ron Rosenbaum, John R. Schindler, Michael M. Thomas, Robert Sam Anson, Philip Weiss and Steve Kornacki.
The paper was best known for publishing Candace Bushnell's column on Manhattan's social life on which the television series Sex and the City was based. It was visually distinctive because of its salmon‑colored pages and sketch illustrations. Henry Rollins once described it as "the curiously pink newspaper"; the paper switched to white‑colored paper in 2014. The fourth and longest-serving editor for the newspaper, Peter Kaplan, left the newspaper on July 1, 2009. Interim editor Tom McGeveran was replaced by Kyle Pope in 2009. Elizabeth Spiers served as editor followed by interim editor Aaron Gell. In January 2013, publisher Jared Kushner named Ken Kurson, a political consultant and author, as the Observer's next editor. Publication of the weekly print edition ended with the November 9, 2016. Issue. Observer Media, the publication's parent company, has continued to publish content on an online site under the masthead "Observer"; the discontinuation of the print Observer came the day after Kushner's father-in-law, Donald Trump, won the 2016 presidential election.
Kushner transferred his ownership of Observer Media's remaining online assets into a family trust, through which his brother-in-law Joseph Meyer took over his former role as publisher. James Karklins, the former Global Chief Marketing Officer at Newsweek Media Group was announced as the new president of Observer on January 8, 2018, his role will be to help Observer grow, by diversifying its revenue streams. The publisher and original owner, Arthur Carter, has had other publishing interests, including the Litchfield County Times. At one time, he was a part‑owner in The East Hampton Star. Carter received a B. A. in French literature from Brown University and an M. B. A. in finance from the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College. He spent 25 years in investment banking until 1981, when he founded the Litchfield County Times in New Milford, Connecticut, he owned it for twenty years until selling to Journal Register Company also selling his 50‑percent interest in The East Hampton Star in 2003. He has been an adjunct professor of philosophy and journalism at New York University and is a trustee.
In July 2006, Jared Kushner, a 25‑year‑old law student and son of a wealthy New Jersey developer, Charles Kushner, purchased the paper for just under $10 million. In April 2007 Bob Sommer became president of Observer Media Group, subsequently served on the Observer Media Group Board of Directors. In January 2017, Jared Kushner announced he would sell his stake to a Kushner family trust, when he became a senior advisor to President Donald Trump. Kushner's brother-in-law, Joseph Meyer, the CEO of Observer Media Group since 2013, replaced him as publisher. In 2016, the New York Observer became notable for being one of only a handful of newspapers to endorse United States presidential candidate Donald Trump in the Republican Party presidential primaries; the newspaper's owner and publisher, Jared Kushner, is Donald Trump's son-in-law and was an advisor to the Trump presidential campaign. The Observer did not repeat its endorsement after Donald Trump became the Republican nominee for President. Official website "The New York Observer collected news and commentary".
The New York Times
A slot machine, known variously as a fruit machine, the slots, poker machine/pokies, or slot, is a casino gambling machine which creates a game of chance for its customers. Its standard layout is a display with three or more reels which rotate when a lever is pulled or button pushed. Slot machines are known as one-armed bandits because they were operated by pulling upon a large mechanical lever on the side of the machine, because of their ability to empty a player's pockets and wallet as a thief would. Many modern machines are still equipped with a legacy lever in addition to the button. Slot machines include one or more currency detectors that validate the form of payment, whether coin, cash, or token; the machine pays off according to patterns of symbols appearing on its display. Slot machines are the most popular gambling method in casinos and constitute about 70 percent of the average US casino's income. Digital technology has resulted in variations on the original slot machine concept. Since the player is playing a video game, manufacturers are able to offer more interactive elements, such as advanced bonus rounds and more varied video graphics.
The "slot machine" term derives from the slots on the machine for retrieving coins. "Fruit machine" comes from the traditional fruit images on the spinning reels, such as lemons and cherries. Sittman and Pitt of Brooklyn, New York, U. S. developed a gambling machine in 1891, a precursor to the modern slot machine. It contained five drums holding a total of 50 card was based on poker; this machine proved popular and soon many bars in the city had one or more of the machines. Players would insert a nickel and pull a lever, which would spin the drums and the cards they held, the player hoping for a good poker hand. There was no direct payout mechanism, so a pair of kings might get the player a free beer, whereas a royal flush could pay out cigars or drinks, the prizes wholly dependent on what was on offer at the local establishment. To make the odds better for the house, two cards were removed from the deck: the ten of spades and the jack of hearts, which doubles the odds against winning a royal flush.
The drums could be rearranged to further reduce a player's chance of winning. Due to the vast number of possible wins with the original poker card-based game, it proved impossible to come up with a way to make a machine capable of making an automatic payout for all possible winning combinations. Somewhere between 1887 and 1895, Charles Fey of San Francisco, California, U. S. devised a much simpler automatic mechanism with three spinning reels containing a total of five symbols – horseshoes, spades, a Liberty Bell. The bell gave the machine its name. By replacing ten cards with five symbols and using three reels instead of five drums, the complexity of reading a win was reduced, allowing Fey to devise an effective automatic payout mechanism. Three bells in a row produced ten nickels. Liberty Bell spawned a thriving mechanical gaming device industry; when the use of these gambling devices was banned in his home state after a few years, Fey still could not keep up with demand for the game elsewhere.
The Liberty Bell machine was so popular. Thus in 1907, manufacturer Herbert Mills from Chicago produced a slot machine called the Operator Bell. By 1908 lots of "bell" machines were installed in most cigar stores, bowling alleys and barber shops. Early machines, including an 1899 "Liberty Bell", are now part of the Nevada State Museum's Fey Collection. Other early machines, such as the trade stimulator, gave out winnings in the form of fruit-flavoured chewing gums with pictures of the flavours as symbols on the reels; the popular cherry and melon symbols derive from this machine. The BAR symbol now common in slot machines was derived from an early logo of the Bell-Fruit Gum Company; the payment of food prizes was a used technique to avoid laws against gambling in a number of states, for this reason a number of gumball and other vending machines were regarded with mistrust by the courts. The two Iowa cases of State v. Ellis and State v. Striggles are both used in classes on criminal law to illustrate the concept of reliance upon authority as it relates to the axiomatic ignorantia juris non excusat.
In these cases, a mint vending machine was declared to be a gambling device because by chance the machine would give the next user a number of tokens exchangeable for more candy. Despite the fact that the result of the next use would be displayed on the machine, the courts ruled that "he machine appealed to the player's propensity to gamble, and, vice."In 1963, Bally developed the first electromechanical slot machine, called Money Honey. The electromechanical approach of the 1960s allowed Money Honey to be the first slot machine with a bottomless hopper and automatic payout of up to 500 coins without the help of an attendant; the popularity of this machine led to the increasing predominance of electronic games, the side lever soon became vestigial. The first true video slot machine was developed in 1976 in Kearny Mesa, California by the Las-Vegas based Fortune Coin Co; this slot machine used
A racino is a combined race track and casino. In some cases, the gambling is limited to slot machines, but many locations are beginning to include table games such as blackjack and roulette. In 2003, Joe Bob Briggs described the economic motivation of race track owners to convert into racinos: Horse racing and dog racing have been in a slow decline for 20 years now....the only tracks that have thrived are the ones that have slot machines. In many cases their live handle has continued to decline, but their revenues have shot up so fast that they're able to offer the biggest purses and thereby attract the best horses. Tracks like Delaware Park and West Virginia's Mountaineer Park, once considered places where local degenerates bet on broken-down nags in claiming races, are now among the wealthiest tracks around, with the best races. Fabled tracks like Pimlico, on the other hand, sometimes have trouble making ends meet. USA Today noted in a June 2003 article that receipts from slot machines are divided about evenly in four ways: Payment of the operating costs and payouts to lucky gamblers, State taxes, Prize money offered to jockeys and horse owners, Profit for the racino operator.
As of 2013, racinos are legal in ten U. S. states: Delaware, Maine, New Mexico, New York, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, West Virginia. The first racino in Pennsylvania opened in November 2006. West Virginia pioneered the concept when MTR Gaming Group was allowed to introduce video lottery terminals to the venue now known as Mountaineer Casino and Resort in Chester. Delaware, Rhode Island, West Virginia, three of the members of the Multi-State Lottery Association, jointly ran a progressive VLT game, Ca$hola, from 2006 to July 2011. While VLTs were somewhat successful, a November 2003 article from the Global Gaming Insider noted the real financial success story was the introduction of reel spinning slot machines in Iowa: In 1994, Iowa voters authorized reel spinning slot machines at Iowa racetracks. Polk County, the owner of a brand new, bankrupt horse track, Prairie Meadows, spent $26 million to convert the clubhouse into a casino and install 1,100 slot machines; the racino opened for business on April 1, 1995.
Reel-spinning slots proved to be much more popular than video poker. In the twelve months ended March 31, 1996 machine revenues totaled $119.3 million, enabling Polk County to pay off the $27 million bond issue that paid for the clubhouse casino conversion and retire the track's initial $38.8 million bond issue 17 years early. As the racino had increased revenues, horse racing purses increased six-fold, which attracted better horses to the racetrack and helped to develop horse breeding in Iowa; the Global Gaming Insider article noted that the creation of the racino has led to consolidation in the ownership of racetracks, with Magna Entertainment Corporation and Churchill Downs Incorporated the largest. In November 2004, Florida voters amended their state constitution to allow slot machines at parimutuel facilities. In Bangor, Maine, a $131 million complex is under construction that will house, among other things, a gaming floor featuring up to 1,500 slot machines, a seven-story hotel, a four-level parking garage.
The new racino is slated to open in the summer of 2008. In Biddeford, Maine on November 2, 2010 by a vote of 59%-41% approved a referendum to relocate Scarborough Downs to Biddeford with a new Harness Racing Track/Racino Complex with Slot Machines, an Entertainment Complex and a 200 room Hotel; the plan is to have most if not all of the complex open sometime in 2012. Maine voters approved the Oxford County Maine casino on Nov 2, 2010 the indications are that the Bangor Maine Racino and the relocated Scarborough Downs Racino facility could have table games as well. There are two racino-like facilities in Arkansas; the Oaklawn Jockey Club Racing Track, a horse track, is in Hot Springs. Southland Park, a greyhound track, is in West Memphis. Dictionary entry tracing the term back to 1995 Gambling drives passion for ponies, A June 2003 article from USA Today Argument Over VLTs at Tracks Heats Up, a December 2003 article from the Detroit News