Southern & Midwest Gaming and Destinations │ July 2022

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PLUS: TIPS ON BLACKJACK • CRAPS • VIDEO POKER & MORE! Covering casinos in Mississippi, Louisiana, Florida, Alabama, Indiana, Missouri, Ohio, Minnesota, Michigan, Wisconsin, and more!


Summer Gaming Getaways:





When it comes to Summer getaways, there is no better place to kick back and relax than at a lavish casino resort. We are excited to feature some of our favorite Gaming Getaways for your next adventure. Enjoy!


Celebrity Cruises: The Ultimate Summer Getaway

Get the scoop on what’s happening at our preferred properties around the region.

Top Casino Sportsbooks: Watch and wager at these great sportsbooks.

Casino Scene: Hot Happenings at Our Preferred Properties


Betting Sports 101: Basics of Sportsbook Betting


Property Spotlight: Oaklawn Park Gaming & Racing Hot Springs, Arkansas


3-Card Poker: Basic Game Play


Video Poker: Rounders of the Machines


Poker: Texas Hold ‘em Trapping with a Big Hand


Sports Betting: Check out the odds for future sporting events and the betting trends of each. Find your spot and wager when ready!




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HOT HAPPENINGS AT OUR PREFERRED CASINOS, RACETRACKS AND MORE. We are excited to continue to publish our top picks for entertainment, promotions and other features from Preferred Properties of Gaming and Destinations. These properties are supporters of G&D and we encourage you to check them out on your next gaming adventure. For more hot happenings and gaming news, visit

(Philadelphia, MS) Pearl River Resort is one of the premier gaming and entertainment

destinations in the South. Featuring two hotels and casinos with the Silver Star Hotel & Casino and the Golden Moon Hotel & Casino collectively boasting over 1,000 rooms, a luxurious spa, award-winning dining and more, your options of luxurious living won’t run short. Also take

advantage of two-championship golf courses at the Dancing Rabbit Golf Club that are regularly featured as top courses to play in the country. Pearl River is also known for having some of

the best entertainment in the South including Poison ( July 3) and Tesla (September 17). For reservations and more information, call 1-866-447-3275 or visit

(Coastal Mississippi) As the website says, “When you visit The Secret Coast, you will be met with warm welcomes and 62 miles of shoreline dotted by unique coastal communities.” This is a perfect description of the Southern destination loaded with casinos, great golf, restaurants and more.

The biggest event of the year comes in October with Cruisin’ The Coast (Oct. 2-9) that offers

a celebration of antique classic cars and hot rods boasting great bands and other entertainment stretched over 30 miles of beach-side highway with stops in Bay St. Louis, Biloxi, D’Iberville, Gulfport, Pass Christian, Ocean Springs and Pascagoula. Book your room now because they

will fill up quickly! Get more information about the area and other events and entertainment at

(Baton Rouge, LA) L’Auberge Baton Rouge - L’Auberge Baton Rouge is Baton Rouge’s premier gaming, dining, entertainment, and lodging destination! Enjoy live entertainment in The Event Center featuring: Marlon Wayans ( July 16), Tom Segura ( July 17), The Chee-Weez (Aug.

13) and Deon Cole (Aug. 18). Tickets available at all Ticketmaster outlets. Riverbend Terrace II

is also now open! Featuring 2,400 sq. ft. of open-air gaming, over 91 slot machines, 5 table games and an entertainment bar. For more information, call 866-261-7777 or visit (Vicksburg, MS) Ameristar Casino Hotel - Ameristar is committed to creating a magical

experience for every guest, and that goes for their room rates too. In addition to AARP, AAA and other discounts, the property also honors a “Best Rate Guarantee” that ensures you will get the

best possible rate when you book your room and if happen to find a lower rate within 24 hours of making your reservation, they will happily match the rate. Enjoy!

For reservations and more information, call 1-601-630-3786 visit (Hot Springs, AR) Oaklawn Racing Casino Resort – Don’t miss great gaming and headlining entertainment at Oaklawn including Clint Black (Aug. 6), Cheap Trick (Sept. 17) and Lorrie

Morgan (Sept. 23). Plus, stay and play on your next visit in Oaklawn’s new luxurious hotel and

enjoy a resort-style pool and the relaxing Astral Spa. For more information and reservations, call 1-800-625-5296 or visit

(Tunica, MS) Hollywood Casino Tunica – Get a taste of the glitz and glamor of the stars at

Hollywood Casino Tunica. After checking out the amazing collection of memorabilia around the property, guests can enjoy the award-winning Fairbanks Steakhouse for one of the best dining experiences in the region and then stay in a 5-story tower overlooking the casino floor and an 8-story tower next to the largest indoor pool in Tunica. Also check out the River Bend Links Golf Course for a round of golf and for a sweet treat, try a delicious Frappuccino at the new

Hollywood & Grind coffee shop to round out your stay. For more information, call 1-800-8710711 or visit

Celebrity Cruises - Discover luxury cruises to the Caribbean, Mediterranean, Alaska and more

with a variety of options and destinations with Celebrity Cruises. Offering ports of departure in Fort Lauderdale, Miami and Tampa, Florida, as well as California, Massachusetts, New Jersey

and Washington, cruisers should be able to find a convenient destination to start the journey of

a lifetime. There are always special offers and packages to take advantage of at CelebrityCruises. com. Check it out and start your adventure today!

(Mount Pleasant, MI) Soaring Eagle Casino Resort – If you are looking for great gambling

and a full resort experience, look no further than Soaring Eagle. With 210,000 square-feet of

gaming space, five hundred rooms and suites, and a Spa & Salon with everything you need to

relax and be pampered. Also be sure to check out the array of dining options to fill any appetite including Ascend Sports Book & Lounge, Siniikaung Steak House and more. Plus, check out the upcoming headliner entertainment including The Black Crowes ( July 9), Chris Stapleton

( July 21), Zac Brown Band ( July 30) and Journey, Blake Shelton, Kid Rock, Alice in Chains and Ringo Starr in August and September. Also…buy two or more tickets and get $20 in premium play to use on the day of the show. For more information, tickets and reservations, call 1-877232-4532 or visit

(Bowler, WI) North Star Mohican Casino Resort – As if you ever needed a reason for a

gambling getaway, North Star certainly has plenty of them to ensure your stay is great from the second you step in the lobby. Guests enjoy great gambling with over 1,200 machines, plenty

of table games including blackjack, Three Card Poker, Let it Ride, Craps and more. Also, book a room in their luxurious contemporary hotel or the 57-site RV Park with 20-30-and 50-

amp service, pull thru sites, picnic table area and pet friendly. Top entertainment includes Jeff Foxworthy ( July 9), Michael Carbonaro (August 13) and more. For more information and reservations, call 1-800-952-0195 or visit

(Deadwood, SD) Deadwood South Dakota is loaded with great events this summer including

the biggest bike week on the planet, Sturgis Rally (Aug. 5-14) where you can find good times and great music including Snoop Dogg (Aug. 6), Slaughter (Aug. 7), Tesla (Aug. 8) Locash (Aug. 8),

Rob Zombie (Aug. 8) Travis Tritt (Aug. 10), and Aaron Lewis (Aug. 10) just to name a few. Also take part in the poker tournament, pub crawl, 5K run, tattoo contest, beard and mustache contest and more. Get more info about the event at and more events and information about Deadwood at

G A M I N G A N D D E S T I N AT I O N S . C O M |




G etaways ummer is here and vacation season is in full swing. Whether you are

a beach junkie or prefer a more inland getaway, there are plenty of options to beat the heat and get your gambling fix all in the same trip. We are excited to highlight a few of our favorite casino destinations that are ready to welcome you for anything from a quick overnight to an extended stay. With their lavish amenities inside and out, you’ll be sure to keep cool in the daytime, and ready to roll at night. We hope you enjoy our picks for our

Pearl River Resort

Pearl River Resort boasts two resortstyle properties that includes the Silver Star and Golden Moon Casinos that collectively offer everything any gaming enthusiast would ever want. Guests can take advantage of two championship golf

favorite Summer Gaming Getaways!

courses, lavish pools, sensational spas,

Pearl River Resort (Philadelphia, Mississippi) 1-866-447-3275

sportsbook, and world-class restaurants.


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concert venues, a 23-acre water park, If you are looking for a great Southern Summer Getaway, this should be at the top of your list.

Coastal Mississippi

Coastal MississippiMississippi Gulf Coast Home to some of the best casinos in the worlds stretching from Biloxi to Bay St. Louis, the Mississippi Gulf Coast offers great gambling, amazing food and the charm of Southern hospitality that everyone loves. Beaches, local food and dining and nightlife make the area one of the most eclectic and unique tourist destinations in the country.

Stay cool at Buccaneer Bay Waterpark located in Waveland that spans 4.5 acres overlooking the Gulf of Mexico. This family-friendly attraction includes a host of outdoor activities for all ages including water slides, surfing pools, and a 460,000-gallon wave pool that simulates eight different wave patterns, just to name a few! Also consider hopping aboard the Captain Pete in the Gulfport Yacht Harbor and get ready for one of the most exciting outdoor attractions in Coastal Mississippi! While crossing the Mississippi Sound en route to Ship Island, snag a seat on the top deck and spot a dolphin or two. Once you’ve landed, enjoy exploring the island’s history at Fort Massachusetts or settle under a beach umbrella and enjoy the views of the emerald-green waters. Lastly, be sure to check out the Mississippi Aquarium that stretches over 5.6 acres and contains over 80,000 square feet of exhibits featuring species from the water, land and air. The three-story Aquatic Wonders exhibit offers an immersive, hands-on experience, from the ray and shark touch experience to a 360-degree suspended walking tunnel. In addition, guests can enjoy incredible outdoor exhibits, ranging from an aviary to habitats for river otters, dolphins, alligators, and river fishes!

L’Auberge Casino Hotel - Baton Rouge

Hot Springs has always been a popular destination for leisure travelers and gamblers alike. Home to the historic, and recently renovated and expanded Oaklawn Park Racing and Gaming, the bar has certainly been raised and the property now offers resort-style relaxing, great gambling and more. The hotel offers an array of amenities including a rooftop pool with private cabanas, cocktails, and a tasty menu at your service. Guests can also relax in the Astral Spa and engage in their senses while indulging in luxurious signature treatments. The spa services offer access to the full-service locker rooms and lounges where you will find a peaceful space to quiet your mind before your treatments and relax after to fee renewed and rejuvenated.

Oaklawn Park Racing and Gaming

Oaklawn Park Racing and Gaming (Hot Springs, Arkansas) 1-800-625-5296

Oaklawn is a great summer spot to stay and play with some of the best horseracing in the region, a full casino and great dining and a sure stop on our Summer Gaming Getaway list!

L’Auberge Casino Hotel - Baton Rouge

L’Auberge Casino Hotel Baton Rouge (Baton Rouge, Louisiana) 1-866-261-7777 L’Auberge Casino Hotel in Baton Rouge is a gem of the South that offers great gambling, dining and summertime fun to fill a great gaming getaway. The rooftop pool allows you to ‘float among the clouds’ and soak up the views of the Mississippi from the pool deck featuring private cabanas, friendly poolside service and a full-service bar. Also recently added are two outdoor gaming areas, Riverbend Terrace I G A M I N G A N D D E S T I N AT I O N S . C O M |


Celebrity Cruises

and Riverbend Terrace II that offers an inviting atmosphere to your gaming experience. Riverbend Terrace I offers 3,000 square-feet, 120 slot machines, table games including roulette, blackjack and baccarat, and televisions to catch any sports or other programming of interest. Riverbend Terrace II offers an additional 2,400 square-feet with more gaming options and spectacular views of the Mississippi River while you play your favorite games. Be sure to add L’Auberge Baton Rouge to your summer itinerary.

Deadwood, South Dakota


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Deadwood, South Dakota One of the hidden gambling getaway gems of the Midwest is Deadwood, South Dakota where outdoor recreation runs rapid and gambling is plentiful. The town is a National Historic Landmark with roots dating back to 1876 when outlaws, gamblers and gunslingers like Wild Bill Hickcok, Calamity Jane and Poker Alice came to town looking for gold and a good time. With almost twenty casinos, you are sure to find a place to lay down a bet and sports betting is now offered at most casinos. When it comes to recreation and outdoor activities, take your pick from ATV and Off-Roading on the trails of the Black Hills, or hiking and horseback riding are also popular summer pass times. Take in the history of the area and enjoy a great getaway to this historic destination.

Sail the Seas! 1-888-751-7804 When it comes to the premium summer getaway for gamers, look no further than Celebrity Cruises and their awardwinning on and off board activities and amenities. Choose your favorite destinations including the Caribbean, Bahamas, Mexico and more from convenient ports of call including Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Tampa and Boston just to name a few. Once on board, embellish in the luxuries of their cruise ships, dine on world-class cuisine in elegant restaurants, watch thrilling shows in the state-of-the-art theater and melt your worries away in the indulgent spa. Marvel at the breathtaking views of the ocean from every corner of the ship while you embrace the opportunity to relax, recharge, and relish your time like no other vacation.

We hope you get to check out some of these suggested Summer Gaming Getaways for your next vacation or quick getaway!

Celebrity Cruises –

Celebrity Cruises:

Put Some Sizzle in Your Summer Gaming Getaway PLAN YOUR ADVENTURE AT CELEBRITYCRUISES.COM A Celebrity Cruise Offers Everything You Expect And More Than You Imagined This summer, treat yourself to a vacation that offers the comfort and amenities of the finest hotels, best in class service, fine dining with menus crafted by a Michelin-starred chef, a state-of-the-art spa, Broadway-caliber entertainment, exciting night life and a worldclass casino-all while you journey to some of the most captivating destinations around the world. Players who demand the ultimate gaming experience insist on sailing with Celebrity. They know every detail of their journey on board meets their high standards, including the modern casinos on every ship. With an attention to detail and a dedication to outstanding service that are second to none, Celebrity Cruises redefines the concept of a luxury vacation in every way.


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We should include the launch of Beyond and her sailing in Europe throughout the summer. Also mention how there is variety of ships and destinations available to take their summer vacation. Celebrity’s award-winning fleet, including their newest revolutionary Edge® Series featuring the recently-launched Celebrity BeyondSM which sails throughout Europe this summer, journeys to more than 300 destinations on all seven continents around the globe. With one of the largest fleets in the world and such a wide variety of itineraries, travel have nearly limitless options when it comes to a summer vacation. Each ship was designed to be the setting for your perfect gaming getaway. Every moment aboard is an opportunity to be amazed by the awe-inspiring spaces both inside and out. Equally impressive are the subtle details found throughout the Celebrity ships, which

enhance your journey in unexpected ways. And speaking of details, to make your cruise completely carefree and convenient, drinks, Wi-Fi, and tips are Always Included®.

For True Gaming Excitement Always Bet On Celebrity When you sail with Celebrity Cruises, consider everything you do (or don’t do) a lead-up to a thrilling evening in the stateof-the-art casino. When you step inside, it’s obvious that no detail was overlooked to provide a dynamic yet sophisticated environment for a gaming experience unlike any other. Test your skill at over 150 of table games. Try your luck at one of our 2,000 slot machines. Whatever your game is, Celebrity has your number. Take your gaming to the next level as a member of Celebrity’s Blue Chip Club where the more you play, the more you win. Joining is as easy as swiping your SeaPass® card while playing any slot

anticipation of what’s to follow. While you consider the extensive menus, a certified sommelier will assist you in selecting the perfect wine for your meal from the most awarded wine collection at sea. And with Celebrity’s Select Dining, you dine when you choose and with the guests you choose.

See The World Like Never Before

machine or table game. Plus, you’ll receive $20 in Free Play as soon as you earn 20 points. As you play, you’ll access six membership tiers with additional benefits and exclusive perks. With custom limits, late hours, action-packed cruise tournaments, a smoke-free environment, and better odds, Celebrity casinos offer everything players could want. Whether you prefer slots, dice, or cards, come see why it pays to play with Celebrity. You’ll almost be able to feel Lady Luck standing behind you as place your next bet and discover that there are casinos, and then there are Celebrity casinos.

Getting There Is More Than Half The Fun. After you settle in and get acquainted with your home away from home, you’ll want to take advantage of everything your ship has to offer. Join a friendly game of Croquet or Bocce at the Lawn Club on Celebrity Solstice® Series ships where you can feel real grass under your feet. Play pool volleyball with ship officers or test your archery skills. Expand your wine knowledge alongside expert sommeliers or take a cooking class with one of the many accomplished chefs. Wander through art galleries and admire the diverse works created by world-famous artists or watch thrilling shows in the state-of-the-art theater on Edge Series ships. And those are just some of the countless options available to you on board. On a Celebrity cruise, how much (or how little you do) is entirely up to you.

Unrivaled Comfort And Convenience Celebrity Cruises offers a variety of accommodations to suit all travelers including the luxury of The Retreat®, with its exclusive

privileges including private dining, a sundeck* and lounge reserved for guests of The Retreat, and a Personal Retreat Host who will ensure you’ll have everything you need on board or on shore. Celebrity has also introduced Aqua Sky Suites, which combine their well-being inspired AquaClass® experience with exclusive spaces, services, and amenities of The Retreat to leave you more renewed than ever. If you want a vacation focused on wellness, choose an AquaClass stateroom featuring spa elements in your room, priority seating at Blu restaurant, plus access to the SEA Thermal Suite or Persian Garden with its stunning sea views. For VIP-level personalized service, Concierge Class staterooms include special amenities and your own dedicated concierge who can arrange anything to make your cruise even more enjoyable and relaxing. With luxury accommodations like this, it’s understandable if you never want to leave your room.

Where Every Meal Is An Unforgettable Experience Foodies from around the world adore the creative menus inspired by the regions Celebrity visits and the variety of dining options, from casual to gourmet. You’ll savor every bite as you enjoy dishes crafted by Michelin-starred chef, Cornelius Gallagher. Whether you’re in the mood for informal or upscale, dining inside or under the stars, each meal will be a pleasure. A hand-crafted cocktail created by an expert mixologist is the perfect way to stimulate your palette in

Celebrity Cruises encourages people to sail beyond their own borders and expand their horizons. From the beaches of the Caribbean to the breathtaking coastal views of Alaska. From the historic cities of Northern Europe to the beauty of the Mediterranean. From the mystique of far-off Asia to the allure of Australia and the South Pacific. Celebrity Cruises makes every stop on your itinerary an immersive experience with more overnight stays, personalized shore excursions, culinary adventures, and multi-night vacation packages worldwide. When you sail with Celebrity Cruises, the entire world is open.

A Wellness Journey—Well Beyond the Spa Going on vacation should never mean you have to abandon healthy living. On the contrary. Wellness is fundamental to the Celebrity Cruises philosophy. That’s why they’ve thought of everything you need to nourish your mind, body, and spirit while on vacation. Begin your day with one of their first at sea fitness programs to get energized for the experiences that await you. After your workout, reward yourself for your effort with one of the 120 rejuvenating treatments at The Spa. If your goal this summer is to just get down to the serious business of chilling, you’ll find your happy place in a lounge chair poolside or on a sundeck overlooking the ocean. When you sail with Celebrity Cruises, it’s truly all about you.

Are you new to Celebrity Cruises? There has never been a better time to sail with Celebrity Cruises. Go to casino or email to learn more about unique summer vacations with the best gaming options. Be sure to sign up to receive news about exciting events, special offers and exclusive sailings for Blue Chip Club members. * Available on Edge Series and Revolutionized ships G A M I N G A N D D E S T I N AT I O N S . C O M |


Pearl River Resort

Top Sportsbooks: Where to Watch & Wager

Football season is almost here, and we can’t wait to visit our favorite sportsbooks and place some wagers on our favorite teams. It wasn’t long ago that Las Vegas was the only place to legally place a sports bet. But today, most states have passed some sort of sports betting and legislation continues to expand for what will hopefully be a universal offering for sports bettors around the country. With the expanded presence of one of our favorite pastimes, also comes more options and more competition for where to watch and wager. We are excited to highlight a few of our favorite sportsbooks to check out for your next gambling getaway or just an afternoon of awesome college of NFL football. Sweetgrass Golf Course at Island Resort & Casino


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In the South Pearl River Resort (Philadelphia, Mississippi) 1-866-447-3275 Director of Race and Sports Book: Chris Hopwood

Located at Pearl River Resort’s Golden Moon Hotel & Casino, The Sportsbook at Timeout Lounge offers 3,300 square-feet of traditional sports betting in which guests can bet on all professional league sports and major collegiate sporting events. Bet on your favorite teams and catch the game from the comfort of the newly remodeled Timeout Lounge where you will find 20 televisions with feeds to all the major sports networks, 12 state-of-the-art

odds/wager boards listing all games and scores, 3 wager stations to place in-person bets and a full bar with “Bar Juice” charging stations for tablets and phones. “What makes us unique is we are the first Sportsbook in Tribal Nations post PASPA overturning by the Supreme Court in 2018.” Commented Sportsbook director, Chris Hopwood. “We are an independent Sportsbook which means we do all our lines and Risk Management from Mississippi. The betting lines would reflect the regional wagers from our customers and not the national lines the corporate Sportsbooks use.” The lounge also offers a full menu serving your favorite gameday snacks.

L’Auberge Hotel Casino - Baton Rouge

L’Auberge Hotel Casino (Baton Rouge, Louisiana) 1-866-261-7777 Sportsbook Manager: Russell Bittola

The Sportsbook at L’Auberge Hotel Casino Baton Rouge is your fifty-yard line, behind home plate, center court ticket to real offs, points, and overunders to last a lifetime. Enjoy 24/7 sports betting with twenty-five betting kiosks located on the casino floor near the high limit slots area. Also, this fall the property will unveil the all-new Barstool Sportsbook that will be located on the casino floor near the High Limit Slots area and will feature the best features of any spotsbook around. Be sure to check it out.

wagering options per game as well as multiple parlay options and the ability to buy and sell a wide range of points for most games. Live wagering is available for almost every game or event from all the most recognized leagues and promotions including the NFL, NCAA, NBA, MLB, NHL, PGA, major soccer leagues, combat sports, and auto racing. This fall – just in time for football season – Oaklawn’s Sportsbook will premiere its online sports wagering

platform which will be available as an app on Apple and Android mobile devices and desktop computers. The new platform will mirror the wagering menu offered in the casino and allow guests of legal age within the borders of Arkansas to bet on sports through Oaklawn remotely. Oaklawn’s new online platform will rival other major national brand menus while providing the added assurance of being associated with the Oaklawn brand that Arkansans have trusted for more than 100 years.

Oaklawn Racing Casino Resort (Hot Springs, Arkansas) 1-800-625-5296 |

Oaklawn Racing Casino Resort is one of the best places to bet on sports in the Southeast. Oaklawn’s Sportsbook covers all major worldwide sports and provides players with as many as 300

Oaklawn Racing Casino Resort G A M I N G A N D D E S T I N AT I O N S . C O M |


Ameristar Casino Hotel Vicksburg

Ameristar Casino Hotel Vicksburg (Vicksburg, Mississippi) 1-601-638-1000 Sportsbook Manager: Keith Hardy

If you’re in Vicksburg, Mississippi, or anywhere close, the best place to bet is Ameristar. So, if you are a sports better, you can rest assured that The End Zone at Ameristar Casino is the ultimate venue to place your bets and watch a game. The End Zone sports bar has an expansive beer selection, and a spectacular sports viewing space with more than 100 seats, 23 large screen TVs, and the area’s largest high-definition television. There are approximately 4,000 square-feet of sports betting fun, with a full-service sports book and seventeen betting kiosks. Whether you’re looking for the big pay per view fights or your favorite football team, for the best sports betting experience in Mississippi, head for The End Zone. 12

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Soaring Eagle Resort & Casino (Mount. Pleasant, Michigan) 1-888-732-4537

Soaring Eagle Resort & Casino is the premier gaming destination in Michigan and when it comes to sports betting, there’s not a better place to be to find action on your favorite teams.

Soaring Eagle Resort & Casino

Ascend Sportsbook at Soaring Eagle offers comfortable seating for over 75 guests at the bar or restaurant, several large screen televisions to watch your favorite games and a tasty menu to fill your appetite will have you hanging out for hours!


p o t s n No


SPORTS BETTING: Tips & Tricks With baseball wrapping up soon and football getting ready to kick off, we are excited about another season loaded with opportunities to cash in on the games. While it might seem simple to just make a bet on a game, there are other things to consider that will ultimately help you be a more informed, and confident, sports bettor. We are excited to highlight a few tips to get you off to a great start this season and hopefully make it a profitable year.

Basics at the Book If you have never placed a bet at sportsbook, it is simple but helps to know the basics. Once you find your seat and where you are going to hang out for the game, find a betting sheet, usually located near the betting windows. Betting sheets outline the games and spreads being offered. The sheets are typically printed in the morning, and by comparing what was printed, and what the current odds are on the LED board in the Sportsbook, you can see how the line is moving. Once you have selected your bet, you will want to find the three-digit ID number located to the left of the game. You will also want to know what kind of bet you are making (Ie. spread, moneyline, over/under) and the amount of the wager. So, if you want to bet $50 on the Bengals as a 3.5 point favorite, you would say, “50 dollars on 125 spread” (or whatever ID number is for the 14

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Bengals). Hang on to your ticket, and if you win, go cash it after the game, leave a friendly tip to the teller and be on your way.

Types of Bets There are several types of bets, and then variations of those bets, making it seem confusing to figure out. There are spreads, moneylines and over/under bets to choose from. The two main ways to bet on favorites or underdogs is based on point spreads or a moneylines. For point spreads, the favorite is the team that is expected to win the game and will have a minus sign next to its odds, while the underdog will have a plus sign. If the game is a “toss-up”, the book will list it as a pick’em. Moneyline bets are a bit different and are based on who will win the game outright and uses odds to calculate the payout and is based on a $100 unit. Favorites are given a minus sign and typically represented as -150, -200 or -500. If a favorite is -200, that means you have to bet $200 to win $100. (Or $100 to win $50, etc…) Underdogs are given a plus sign. An underdog designation of +200 would mean that your $100 wager would pay $200. Over/Under (Totals) bets are another popular wager and is when you bet whether the total number of points scored will be over or under the oddsmakers predictions.

Bankroll Management As with anytime you decide to place a wager, it is important to be conscious of your bankroll and adjust accordingly to give yourself the best chance to take advantage of favorable opportunities. It isn’t just about what bets you make, but also the amount of the bet and frequency of bets to protect yourself from cold streaks that are sure to come. It is wise to make more bets at smaller bet sizes than blow your whole bankroll on one bet that could wipe you out. A general rule of thumb is to limit your per bet amount to around 2-5% of your total bankroll. So, if your bankroll is $1,000, your bets should range from $20 to $50.

Pick Your Spots Betting every game, or most of them, is a recipe for disaster in the long run. Instead, find your game or two with a defined edge, and make your play. If you want multi game action, consider a parlay or teaser bet where you can play with the point spread to make it more in your favor. Check the lines and compare them to other sportsbooks, both land-based and online, to see if there is any variance that will give you an advantage. Sometimes a ½ point difference is all you need to cash the bet.

If gold put Deadwood on the map, gaming got us in the history books. Between the 24/7 tables, a world of slots, and shiny new sportsbooks, we’re making the Deadwood experience even more iconic — one spin and one win at a time.

Find more ways to play and more excuses to celebrate at // 1-800-344-8826





s the football season approaches and with baseball in full swing, the sportsbook at Oaklawn Racing Casino Resort is one of the best places to bet on sports in the Southeast. Covering all major sports and providing players with as many as 300 wagering options including parlay options and the ability to buy and sell a wide range of points for most games, sports bettors will love the action.

And with games starting at $.01 to play, everyone is sure to find something to enjoy.

Live wagering is available for almost every game or event from all the most recognized leagues and promotions including the NFL, NCAA, NBA, MLB, NHL, PGA, major soccer leagues, combat sports, and auto racing. Guests can also bet on games and events inside the casino through 24/7 kiosks or the Sportsbook Counter.

Visitors are sure to work up an appetite, and there are plenty of options to choose from.

Also coming soon is the properties online sports wagering platform which will be available as an app on Apple and Android mobile devices and desktop computers. The new platform will mirror the wagering menu offered in the casino and allow guests of legal age within the borders of Arkansas to bet on sports through Oaklawn remotely. Oaklawn’s new online platform will rival other major national brand menus while providing the added assurance of being associated with a brand Arkansans have trusted for more than 100 years. Beyond sports betting, Oaklawn’s casino offers guests access to more than 30 gaming tables – now including live roulette. Electronic game players can enjoy 1,500 machines, including video poker games. 16

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Unlike many casinos, Oaklawn’s main casino floor area is 100% non-smoking. For those who smoke, there is a dedicated smoking section in the casino that is outfitted with air filtration technology that ensures the smoke never leaves the designated area.

From Big Al’s Diner & Deli, which features classic American staples inspired by 1950s diner fare, to gourmet coffee drinks and fresh pastries at Percs, to the best place to watch any big game at Silks Bar & Grill, to old-time breakfast favorites – and one of the best burgers in town – at the Track Kitchen, there are always great selections available. Oaklawn also offers multiple upscale dining offerings, including The Bugler and The OAK Room, both of which were recipients of 2022 OpenTable Diner’s Choice Awards. Each restaurant offers an array of American cuisine, including carefully selected fish and steaks, in a romantic and sophisticated atmosphere. Guests can also enjoy signature cocktails or their favorite beverage while listening to live music in Pop’s Lounge, overlooking the legendary racetrack from the patio of The First Turn Bar, or unwinding by the fireplace in the hotel lobby bar.

For those seeking the ultimate in relaxation, Astral Spa offers a world-class spa experience with luxurious treatments including massages, body treatments, facials, manicures, pedicures and more. In addition to spa services, Astral Spa also features parlors and locker rooms with a steam room, infrared sauna, whirlpool, cold room, and needle shower, reminiscent of the historic downtown bathhouses. The luxury hotel features spacious standard rooms and suites, all with free wifi, large screen TV’s, fine bed linens and towels, robes and more. In spring and summer, the resort’s private swimming pool, available exclusively to hotel guests, features lavish cabanas and a bar with a range of food and beverage options delivered poolside. Whether you seek the best Sportsbook in the Southeast, luxurious relaxation, or great world-class Thoroughbred racing, Oaklawn Racing Casino Resort is a destination that is always sure to deliver. For more information and reservations, visit or call 1-800-625-5296

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Three Card Poker is becoming on of the most popular table games in the casino. Players are discovering it is not only easy to play but also a lot of fun. Three Card Poker is two games in one. There is the Play/Ante game, where you are playing against the dealer to see who has the highest hand, and there is the Pair Plus game where you are wagering on whether or not you will be dealt a pair or better. In most casinos you can bet on either of the games, but some casinos require you to make an Ante Bet in order to bet the Pair Plus portion of the game.

The Play

There are three betting circles in front of each seat. The top betting circle is labeled Pair Plus where the player puts a wager on the pair plus game. Beneath that are two circles labeled Ante and Play for the base game. The game starts with the player making a wager in the Pair Plus and or Ante circle equal to the table minimum. After all the players have made their bets, the dealer will give each player a three card hand. Play begins with the first player to the dealer’s left and continues clockwise around the table.


If a player has made a bet on the Ante they must make their decision to fold or play after looking at their hand. If the player folds, he forfeits the Ante wager. If the players want to continue, they must make an additional bet in the Play circle equal to their Ante bet. 18

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Basic Game Play

After all the players have made their decisions, the dealer will turn over his threecard hand. The dealer needs to “qualify” with a hand of Queen or higher for play to continue. If the dealer’s hand does not contain a Queen or higher all players still active in the hand will be paid even money for their Ante wager and their bet on the Play will be returned to them. If the dealer’s hand does qualify then their hand is compared to the player’s hand. If your hand beats the dealers hand you will be paid even money for your Ante and Play bets. If the dealer’s hand beats your hand, you lose both bets. In the rare event of a tie then the player wins the hand.

Ante Bonus There is a bonus payout on the Ante bet for certain hands and the bonus does not require an additional wager. If you have a straight, three-of-a-kind or straight flush, you will be paid a bonus whether you beat the dealer or not. The bonus payout is paid based on the pay table posted at the table. The payout schedule for the Ante Bonus slightly varies from casino to casino. For a straight flush you will be paid 5 to 1 or 4 to 1. For three of a kind you will be paid 4 to 1 or 3 to 1. For a straight you receive 1 to 1 for your Ante bet. The pay out structure for the Ante Bonus affects the overall house edge on the Ante/ Play portion of the game. A payout of 5 - 4 -1 has a house edge of about 3.4 percent. While the payout of 4 - 3- 1 has a house edge of 6.8 percent.

Strategy The strategy for Ante portion of Three Card Poke is very simple. You should fold if you have a hand lower than Queen – 6 -4 and you should continue and make the Play bet if you hand is higher. To determine if your hand is better than Q-6-4 start with your first highest card and compare it to the Queen, if it is higher you play. You ignore the other two cards. If your first card is a Queen and your second card is higher than 6 you would still play regardless of the ranking of your third card. If it is lower than 6 you don’t play.

Pair Plus The Pair Plus wager is based only on whether your three-card hand has a Pair or higher. This bet is independent of the dealer’s hand. It doesn’t matter if the dealer qualifies or even beats you if you have a bet on the Ante Game. If your hand has a pair or better, you win. If it does not have at least a pair, you will lose. On average you will be dealt a pair or better about 25 percent of the time.

Easy and Fun Much of the popularity of Three Card Poker comes from the simplicity of the game. The strategy can be learned in a minute. Just remember Queen- Six –Four or better and you have mastered the strategy. If you are looking to experience playing a table game with no intimidation, then Three Card Poker might be for you.

G A M I N G A N D D E S T I N AT I O N S . C O M |



VIDEO POKER: Rounders of the Machines You may have seen the 1998 movie “Rounders” starring Matt Damon and John Malkovich where two friends need to win big money playing poker to pay off a large debt. In the old days, say mid-seventies, players traveled from city-to-city looking for poker games (some, but not all, high stakes) because it wasn’t legitimized like it is today. They had to make the “rounds”, thus the name “rounders”. There’s still a form of it today that includes poker, video poker and even slots. Poker Rounders: You’ll still find players making the rounds, especially in high-stakes poker games, looking for the proverbial easy mark. As Amarillo Slim said, “Look around the table. If you don’t see a sucker, get up immediately, because you’re the sucker.” That’s just one reason why it’s a bad idea to get into a poker game with unknown players. Slot Rounders: It may surprise you to know there are cleaver slot machine rounders and those adept at the game can make a good profit. That’s because almost every casino has “must go” jackpots which are even better than straight slot progressives because they’re more predictable. With a progressive the prize continues to grow as more money is poured into the device by many players, but there is no guarantee that it will go at any time in the near future. Truly a dangerous crapshoot. With the “must go” jackpots the device will indicate the amount at which the jackpot is automatically rewarded. When it gets close to that amount find a seat. For example, if the amount is $5,000 and you notice it’s at $4,980 or a similar amount, then it’s going to be a win for you as long as you can afford to hang in there until it hits the $5,000 limit. (Note that it will probably hit before the limit, but is guaranteed at $5,000.) Good luck finding a seat, however, because the “rounders” will be playing and even making phone calls to “team” members to chop the pot when it hits. Video Poker (VP) Rounders: Just like the slot rounders, VP rounders focus primarily on progressive jackpots. The downside is that you will rarely, if ever, find a “must go” amount on VP games. Mostly, you’ll have to toss the dice and play until you run out of bankroll or the stomach to handle any more losses. Be 20

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aware that if the progressive is only on the royal flush (RF) the game becomes very volatile (risky to your bankroll) because the RF is a longshot. Main Game: Unlike traditional slots, with video poker there’s a skill component and you can know with certainty both the volatility and ER. You will need a bigger bankroll for a high-risk game, say Double-Double Bonus (DDB), than a game with less volatility, like 9/6 Jacks or Better (9/6 JOB). In addition, you should use tutorial software to determine the ER before making a VP choice. There are still some excellent main games around, but you have to be diligent to find them and keep the specific locations to yourself. One example is 8/5 Bonus Poker (8/5BP, ER 99.1660%, ER 20.9040) is still available in a Vegas casino and on a progressive RF meter. Make sure you check pay schedules carefully, because some fake BP games pay even money instead of double your wager for two pair.

Linda Boyd is a long-time table game player before turning to video poker, writes for “Southern Gaming and Destinations”, “Arizona Player” and the latest edition of “American Casino Guide”. Boyd’s book, “The Video Poker Edge”, includes free removable pay schedules and her free strategy cards for the most popular games.

Progressive Meter: Although this will be a “guesstimate” on VP devices, especially if they are progressive on several hands (DDB for, example, may be progressive on RFs as well as Four-of-a-Kinds). You can determine the RF amount that gives you even money in advance by using tutorial software or referring to my book, “The Video Poker Edge”, where the process is clearly explained. Glitches: You may find glitches on VP pay schedules by looking at the pay table on the machine and using tutorial software to determine the ER. Sometimes when the game is set up it pays more for a given hand than intended. Eventually their error will be corrected, but in the meantime it’s a good play and rounders will take advantage of it until it’s changed. Final Thoughts: Nowadays good plays for felt games, traditional slots and video poker devices are few and far between. You have to be somewhat of a “rounder”, even if it’s just casing out your neighborhood casinos, to make a profit. You should be patient and look around the casino for all options available because they will change on progressive devices, both VP and traditional slots, with each visit. Rounders in Las Vegas and other casino hubs will find a bigger selection of advantage plays if they are patient and take the time to check out several gambling floors.


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POKER: Trapping with a Big Hand Trapping with pocket aces or pocket can be extremely dangerous. By “trapping” with these hands, I mean just calling one or two bets before the flop, rather than raising or reraising with your hand. By just calling preflop and trapping other players into playing their hands when they ordinarily wouldn’t have done this, you’re creating a bigger pot, which means you’re also risking losing a big pot.

opponent into thinking I’m weak so that he will give

For example, suppose that someone in front of you has raised with Q-Q , and then you decide to just call with your K-K before the flop. Now someone with As-Js decides to call two bets with his hand, and then the board comes off 2s-4s-9h-3h-Ad. In this case, you would have won a huge pot from the opponent who had Q-Q if you had three-bet with your hand instead of calling two bets before the flop, because the As-Js would have folded before the flop and not hung around in hopes of catching a spade draw on the flop and the (for you) dreaded ace on the river. Imagine the number of bets that you would have won from the Q-Q in this scenario.

Advanced Hold’em on the flop is really all about

But because you decided to trap other players into the pot before the flop, you lost a big pot. Because the AsJs flopped the nut flush draw, he was forced to play his hand all the way, and then he hit an ace on the end to beat you.

that smooth-calling in limit Hold’em with big hands can work out very badly or perfectly, depending on

the way the cards fall. When you smooth-call with a big hand, you really are gambling. Advanced Hold’em on the Flop reading other players. If you read your opponent as weak and think you might be able to take the pot away from him, then do it! If you have flopped a

big hand and you feel that betting will drive out our opponent when what you want to do is keep him in the pot, then go ahead and trap your opponent by

checking on the flop. Use your reading ability on the flop to determine what you can and cannot do. You may have flopped top pair, but if you read that your opponent has you beat, just fold your hand, having

lost the minimum number of bets. If you read your

opponent as being weak before the flop and you are

Phil Hellmuth, Jr., is a 16time World Series of Poker Champion. He has two New York Times best-seller books; Play Poker Like the Pros and Bad Beats and Lucky Draws. This column is an excerpt from his latest book, Phill Hellmuth’s Texas Hold ‘em released this summer. Phil’s books and products can be found at and bookstores everywhere. Chat or play with Phil at and learn about his new cell phone poker game at

making a steal on him, then make sure that you

follow through on you steal attempt, unless you then have a strong read that he has hit the flop well.

Suppose that you have K-K before the flop and two

opponents are also in the pot. If the flop comes down

Another time when I may smooth-call with A-A or K-K is when I’m in the big blind and someone else has raised, and it’s just myself and one other opponent in the pot. I smooth-call in order to trick my

As you try different things, you will find that the

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me a lot of action the rest of the hand. Just remember

Despite the grim scenario that I’ve just presented, trapping has its place in tournament poker, lest you become too predictable. One good time to trap is when you’re in late position and no one else has entered the pot yet. This is a good place to just call one bet, to see if anyone else enters the pot behind you. In this scenario, if raise, then you’ll probably just win the blinds. But by smooth-calling, you will at a minimum force the big blind to take a free flop. Just remember that in this case you’re asking for action when you have a big hand. We all know that you should be careful what you ask for, because you may get it!



A-7-2, the advanced player makes his money by

knowing what to do, on the strength of his read on

his opponents. Does either of you opponents, or do

both of them, hold an ace, a set of sevens, or a set of

twos? How does the betting on the flop come down? Are your opponents capable of raising on the flop

with just a pair of sevens or worse? If it does come bet and raised to you in this spot, will you three-bet it or fold? Odds are that you probably have to fold in this case, but what does intuition tell you to do?

basic top ten strategy is a pretty good way to play

Hold’em with a twist- some well-timed intermediate and advanced moves along the way.


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