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Best of Rudi Schiffer

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Heard it on the River

8 April 2004

SLOTS RULE! That is obvious as these machines are shrinking the pool of table games and it's a trend that will continue. Take for example, Atlantic City, where in 1984 the state Casino Control Commission said there were 1,165 table games and 16,183 slots in 11 casinos. Compare that today with 1,373 table games in 12 casinos, but 41,986 slots. Guess I am in the minority that prefers table games but I hate to think of a casino without table games. It could happen, so keep on slinging those dice and doubling down so we don't lose our games. As table games decrease, there is, however, more emphasis on tournaments for table game lovers.

BALLY'S has a trend going of increased attendance at its ongoing ULTIMATE BLACKJACK TOURNAMENT. So much so that it has increased prize money to $150,000 for its 24th event on April 16-18 with first place guaranteed to be $60,000. Some 300 players are expected to fork over the $500 buy-in. Its sister casino, GRAND, just held a blackjack tournament that far exceeded what was expected for signups and unconfirmed rumor has it that a $300,000 tournament may be in the offing there for this summer. GOLDSTRIKE has taken the plunge into big money tournaments as well and on May 15-16 will stage a $100,000 event and follow that with a $100,000 craps tournament on August 13-18. Both of these are $500 buy-ins.

More OLYMPIC TRIALS for Tunica? We staged the U.S. Olympic Boxing trials so why not open that door wider for more of the same, such as swim and dive team trials and track and field trials. Why do you think the County is building an aquatic center with a ten-meter platform and a 17-foot deep diving pool? It's not for gamblers who want to cool off after a hot night in the casinos. We heard that the development would be the centerpiece of a bid to bring the swim/diving trials to Tunica four years hence. Following it could be development of the track and field complex to lure that event in another eight years. Forward thinking? You bet, but that's what Tunica County and its leaders are all about.

While on the subject of what the county is doing, can you imagine a 747 landing at Tunica Airport. It would rattle the windows in the BLUE& WHITE Café, for sure. But that is possible with the completion to 7,000 feet of the runway extension later this air. More landing equipment and electronics would have to be installed and a terminal building expanded to accommodate the large amount of passengers such an aircraft would carry but this is all a very distinct possibility. Can scheduled commercial flights into Tunica be far behind?

BREAKING VEGAS is a HISTORY CHANNEL presentation you won't want to miss and this special will be televised on Sunday, May 9th at 7 p.m. It was inspired by the NY TIMES best-selling book "BRINGING DOWN THE HOUSE" by BEN MEZRICH which was the inside story of six highly-skilled card-counting MIT students who whacked Vegas casinos for millions. This docu-movies focuses on this blackjack team, how they did it and how they were detected.

It was reported recently that casino revenue was down for last year for Tunica and Lula but 2004 seems to be off to a good start and hopefully will offset the decline. A new convention center that has been recommended for the county might get revenues moving up and provide a whole bunch of new jobs. Still waiting on the financial plans to be announced for the proposed NASCAR track here but County officials are optimistic it will happen. Might be some developments in a month or so on financial backing for the motor sports track.

KENNETH WILLIAMS, by way of BELLAGIO, has been named executive chef at GOLDSTRIKE CASINO and Director of F&B, the agile Argentinean, LUCIO ARANCIBIA, says more dining and entertainment change is in the offing as far as facilities for guests is concerned. More Tapas? Senor Arancibia is not talking right now but he promised us a story when plans are finalized.

You can view the finals of the JACK BINION WORLD POKER OPEN on the TRAVEL CHANNEL on April 21 at 8 p.m. Taped by the crew from the WORLD POKER TOUR, it is projected that 5 million viewers will watch the high stakes drama and TUNICA RESORTS will get a heck of a lot of free publicity. Will the extensive television coverage of big stakes poker games continue to bring in new players? Some say the audience will decline as players find out the game is not as easy as it appears on TV where the hole cards of each player are shown and the tape is edited to make it overly exciting. When players find out that most of them lose, interest will wane. We shall see.

They call it QUICKETS at Goldstrike but by any other name, it's EZ-PAY. You'll see little tags dangling from slot machines that use this coin free payment system. It's just a different, but clever, brand name. In the 3-card poker pit at Goldstrike, ROSE, is a friendly presence and her smile carries enough wattage to light up grumpy sorts, behind and in front of the tables.

From the QUOTABLE GAMBLER…The Lyons Press
"I don't care what Gallup or Harris says, tell me what Jimmy The Greek says."
Jim Berry, Cartoon

LAISSEZ LE BON TEMPS ROULER.

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Best of Rudi Schiffer
Rudi Schiffer

Rudi Schiffer is a long time columnist and contributing writer for Jackpot Magazine, the South’s leading gaming publication, and for casinocitytimes.com, the world’s leading casino industry internet news distributor. He is also owner and co-host of the 20-year-old Goodtimes Radio Show, now simulcast on Fridays from 3-6 PM Central Time from Country Classic 1180 AM, Memphis networked with KMIS 1050 AM, and 103.9 KGLU FM from Kennet, MO covering parts of Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee and Mississippi. His radio show is also archived at audiovegas.com. A Boston University Journalism graduate, he resides in Memphis, TN. Known as the "Voice of Tunica" for his support the gaming jurisdiction for two decades, he was also recently named to Memphis Business Quarterly Magazine’s 3rd annual “The Power Players, Who’s Who” of Memphis.He is also a contributing writer for Southern Gaming & Entertainment and Mississippi Gaming.

Rudi Schiffer Websites:

www.AudioVegas.com
Rudi Schiffer
Rudi Schiffer is a long time columnist and contributing writer for Jackpot Magazine, the South’s leading gaming publication, and for casinocitytimes.com, the world’s leading casino industry internet news distributor. He is also owner and co-host of the 20-year-old Goodtimes Radio Show, now simulcast on Fridays from 3-6 PM Central Time from Country Classic 1180 AM, Memphis networked with KMIS 1050 AM, and 103.9 KGLU FM from Kennet, MO covering parts of Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee and Mississippi. His radio show is also archived at audiovegas.com. A Boston University Journalism graduate, he resides in Memphis, TN. Known as the "Voice of Tunica" for his support the gaming jurisdiction for two decades, he was also recently named to Memphis Business Quarterly Magazine’s 3rd annual “The Power Players, Who’s Who” of Memphis.He is also a contributing writer for Southern Gaming & Entertainment and Mississippi Gaming.

Rudi Schiffer Websites:

www.AudioVegas.com