First casino in Nebraska draws hundreds on opening day

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Using just a $5 bill and a quick tug of the slot machine, industry leaders celebrated the opening of the Warhorse Casino Saturday. Signaling the casino as open while making history as the first one in Nebraska. While they cheered inside, the excitement was felt outside as people lined up ready to hit the jackpot. Courtney Williams made the trip from Omaha. She said, “I didn’t think it was gonna be like this soon. I thought it’d be like, what a year from now.”As the eagerness buzzed around the building, it brought a lot of feeling for Nebraska HBPA President Wally Wollsen. “It’s very emotional,” Wollsen said as he held back tears. “We waited a long time for this.” Wollsen said now the Warhorse Casino is up and running, the next step is bringing back horse racing within the state. “The machines are going to support horse racing. And that’s my goal is to improve horse racing, build larger purchases for our horsemen. Keep our horsemen here at home,” he said. Using some of the revenue to support the regrowth of a small tribe in Nebraska. “One of our economic ventures 30 to 40 years ago was to get a casino to help generate revenue for the people of Winnebago,” said Ken Mallory, tribal leader of the Winnebago Tribe. Mallory said it’s a dream come true for the Winnebago Tribe, helping them recover after years of hardship. “Better health care, better water facilities, better homestyle living and just everything that is part of the prosperity, of being an American,” he said. Mallory said the new casino’s outreach extends beyond the dollar and instead helps everyone in the community prosper.

Using just a $5 bill and a quick tug of the slot machine, industry leaders celebrated the opening of the Warhorse Casino Saturday. Signaling the casino as open while making history as the first one in Nebraska.

While they cheered inside, the excitement was felt outside as people lined up ready to hit the jackpot.

Courtney Williams made the trip from Omaha. She said, “I didn’t think it was gonna be like this soon. I thought it’d be like, what a year from now.”

As the eagerness buzzed around the building, it brought a lot of feeling for Nebraska HBPA President Wally Wollsen.

“It’s very emotional,” Wollsen said as he held back tears. “We waited a long time for this.”

Wollsen said now the Warhorse Casino is up and running, the next step is bringing back horse racing within the state.

“The machines are going to support horse racing. And that’s my goal is to improve horse racing, build larger purchases for our horsemen. Keep our horsemen here at home,” he said.

Using some of the revenue to support the regrowth of a small tribe in Nebraska.

“One of our economic ventures 30 to 40 years ago was to get a casino to help generate revenue for the people of Winnebago,” said Ken Mallory, tribal leader of the Winnebago Tribe.

Mallory said it’s a dream come true for the Winnebago Tribe, helping them recover after years of hardship.

“Better health care, better water facilities, better homestyle living and just everything that is part of the prosperity, of being an American,” he said.

Mallory said the new casino’s outreach extends beyond the dollar and instead helps everyone in the community prosper.



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