PA Gaming Review: DraftKings Goes Live & The Wait For Casinos, Horse Racing Continues

Written By Kevin Shelly on May 6, 2020
PA casinos still shuttered

Busy week in PA gaming, even with virus shutdowns and restrictions still guiding gambling in the Quaker State.

While it isn’t off to the races just yet, Pennsylvania regulators want to see horse meets resume soon.

Meanwhile, casinos are drawing up tentative reopening plans and work has resumed on Live! Casino in Philadelphia, with some restrictions. Also, Wind Creek Casino finally wants in on retail sports betting.

And finally, DraftKings online casino went live. You can sign up here and get not one but three bonus offers.

Racing Commission thinks it is time for Wolf to giddy-up

The Pennsylvania State Horse Racing Commission on May 1 formally asked Gov. Tom Wolf in a letter to allow horse racing to resume with safety protocols and no spectators as part of his easing COVID-19 restrictions.

Already, the state has allowed marinas and golf courses to reopen, including at casino properties. Wolf’s May 1 lift also allowed for construction to resume with added safety measures, including a casino work site for Live! in Philadelphia.

He’s already said he is open to considering reopening horse racing.

The governor is expected to announce further changes to restrictions on May 8.

Casinos are planning how to reopen safely

Players want to know: When will casinos reopen? And importantly, what changes are in store to assure more protections from COVID-19?

While there is still no answer as to precisely when, PlayPennsylvania examined how to make casino properties safer and what you might expect when they do reopen.

An estimated 649,000 casino employees lost work due to the shutdown. About 17,000 were PA casino employees.

One of the few properties which did not layoff employees, Wind Creek Casino, hopes to have a retail sportsbook soon.

No need to wait: DraftKings online casino is live

DraftKings Casino went live May 1. The company soft-launched and tested for two days, and it’s now ready 24/7.

New players at DraftKings casino can sign up through our links and get $35 free just for joining. Even better, you are eligible for a $200 risk-free bet for the first 24 hours, and a 20% deposit match up to $500.

DraftKings’ launch makes Pennsylvania home to ten online casinos.

Just the week before, Caesars released its iGaming offering through its partnership with Harrah’s Philadelphia.

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Kevin Shelly

Kevin C. Shelly is an award-winning career journalist who has spent most of his career in South Jersey. He's the former assistant city editor of The Press of Atlantic City, where he covered the casino industry and Atlantic City government as a reporter. He was also an investigative, narrative enterprise, and features reporter for Gannett’s Courier-Post.

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