Major milestones in commercial casino-style gaming

 

1931

Gambling legalized in Nevada

1976

Video keno legalized in Montana

1978

Resorts International is the first casino to open in Atlantic City on May 26

1985

Video poker legalized in Montana

1989

In October, the South Dakota Lottery is the first U.S. lottery to implement video lottery terminals
In November, the first casinos open in Deadwood, South Dakota
The Mirage opens on the Las Vegas Strip in November, setting  the standard for casino resort properties for years to come

1990

Mountaineer Park in West Virginia becomes the first racetrack to offer gaming machines with a limited test of 165 machines

1991

The first riverboat casinos in the U.S. debuted April 1, based in Bettendorf, Davenport and Dubuque, Iowa
In September, Illinois’ first riverboat casino opens in Alton
In October, 11 casinos open in Colorado in the mountain towns of Black Hawk, Central City and Cripple Creek

1992

The Oregon Lottery launches video lottery terminals in April
In August, the first riverboat casinos open in Mississippi
Video poker begins at Louisiana racetracks
The Rhode Island Lottery launches VLTs at two pari-mutuel facilities in September

1993

The first Louisiana riverboat casino opens in Lake Charles

1994

Missouri begins riverboat gaming with four facilities opening in July
In July, Hollywood Park in California is the first American racetrack to open a cardroom
In September, three West Virginia racetracks launch gaming machines

1995

In March, Iowa’s first racetrack casinos open
Indiana opens its first riverboat casino in December, the Casino Aztar in Evansville
Delaware’s first racetrack casino with VLTs opens in December

1999

New Mexico’s first racetrack casino opens in February
On July 29, MGM Grand Detroit is the first of three casinos to open in Michigan
Harrah’s New Orleans, the only land-based casino in Louisiana, opens in October

2002

West Virginia launches VLTs at bars and clubs in January
In February, slot machines at racetracks debut in Louisiana

2004

New York’s first racetrack casino opens in January
In December, Prairie Meadows is the first racetrack to offer table games in addition to slot machines

2005

Oklahoma opens its first racetrack casino in October
In November, Bangor Raceway in Maine becomes the state’s first and only racetrack casino
Hurricane Katrina destroys the Mississippi and Louisiana Gulf Coast casino industry

2006

In November, Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs is the first slot facility to open in Pennsylvania
Electronic games of skill are implemented at Arkansas racetracks in November
The first South Florida racetrack opens its slot machine casino in November

2007

In December, the first table games are added to racetrack casinos in West Virginia

2008

Indiana’s two racetracks open their slot casinos

2009

In December, Boot Hill Casino and Resort in Dodge City becomes Kansas’ first casino

2010

In May, Harrington Raceway is Delaware’s first racetrack to add table games to its slot casino
In July, table games are added to the slot casinos in Pennsylvania
Maryland’s first slot casino opens in Perryville in September

2012

Ohio's first casino opens in Cleveland in May
In October, video lottery terminals debut in Illinois

2013

Maryland adds table games to its casinos beginning in March
Nevada launches the first Internet poker site in the U.S. in April
Delaware launches Internet casino gaming October 31
New Jersey launches Internet casino gaming in November

2015

Massachusetts' first casino opens at Plainridge Park in June

2016

In December, New York's first full commercial casino opens at Tioga Downs

 

Last updated on December 10, 2016