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Oh Look, Another New York Casino, This One From The Oneida Nation

Bridgeport, NY covered bridge

Resorts World Catskills opened its doors this week. However, before the shine has even worn off the new property, another New York casino will host its grand opening.

Less than three weeks from now, on March 1, Oneida Nation will open its new casino, Point Park. The $40-million property will feature 500 slot machines and 20 table games. Additionally, the entire property will be non-smoking.

New Point Park property will be in Bridgeport

While Point Park and Resorts World Catsills are hitting the market at the same time, they are not exactly direct competitiors. The Catskills casino is in southern New York and hopes to lure Manhattanites upstate. Point Park, on the other hand, is much further north. A full 180 miles north to be exact.

Point Park will be a matter of yards from the Onandaga County line. Onandaga County is the home of Syracuse, NY.

In actuality though, the casino will be on Oneida land in Madison County. The casino is embracing its location. One of its sit-down restaurants on the property will be called The Burgers of Madison County.

Jerry Marrello will serve as the property’s general manager. For the past five years, Marrello was the director of nightlife and beverages at Turning Stone, Oneida Nation’s largest casino.

Resorts World Catskills is not competition, but the closest casino to the new location is just 12 miles away. Uncoincidentally, its closest competitor is another Oneida Nation casino.

The Yellow Brick Road Casino is just a mile outside of Onandaga County. The location is south of Bridgeport and east of Syracuse, while Bridgeport is northeast of the city.

If the name strikes you as odd, the theme explains a lot. The property is a Wizard of Oz-themed casino. It is slightly smaller than Point Park, with 400 slots and 14 table games.

While the Yellow Brick Road Casino exmbraces a somewhat kitschy theme, Point Park is near Oneida Lake amidst the famed covered bridges in the county.

Casino saturation continues to be a worry

Certainly Resorts World, with its price tag of $920 million, certainly has more at risk than the smaller Point Park property. Both have the benefit of brand recognition. Oneida is one of the top casino operators in the state. Resorts World, which changed its name from Montreign, has a sister property. The Resorts World Racino at Aqueduct Racetrack is the only gaming facility in the five boroughs.

Nonetheless, 2017 taught us New York is not a great placeto be building new casinos these days. It is fair to suggest the revenues from the new upstate New York commercial casinos were almost catastrophic, missing the mark by as much as 44 percent.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo did try to help the commercial casinos in his latest budget proposal. He would like to widen the discrepancy between racino and casino tax rates to give casinos more of an edge.

However, that will not be of much help for Oneida, who is under a different taxation agreement as a tribal property.

Photo by  debra millet / Shutterstock.com

Jessica Welman

About

Jessica Welman is a longtime member of the poker media. She has worked as a tournament reporter for the World Poker Tour, co-hosted a podcast for Poker Road, and served as the Managing Editor for WSOP.com. A graduate of the University of Southern California and Indiana University, Welman is not only a writer but also a producer. She has been involved for livestreams for the WSOP and WPT and worked as a consultant on many other poker productions. She can be found on Twitter @jesswelman.