BOSSIER CITY, La. (KTAL/KMSS) – Sports betting in Louisiana took off early Sunday morning at the Horseshoe Casino in Bossier City with a flair – a $50,000 bet on the Detroit Lions, one of two NFL teams that haven’t won a game this season.
The first bet was placed after Bossier City Mayor Tommy Chandler cut the ribbon, which was followed by others who were at the casino waiting for the betting to kick off.
Stephen Early, who got there early, said he thought he’d be the first one in line Sunday morning, but was told he was the third person to bet.
Ashley Wade, regional vice president of human resources for Horseshoe, quipped, “Often times, it’s chatter around the table on who’s going to win – well now, you can actually put your money where your mouth is.”
On Friday, the Louisiana Gaming Control Board granted four licenses – In addition to Horseshoe, owned by Caesar’s Entertainment, the others went to Harrah’s in New Orleans, Boomtown Casino in Harvey, and L’Auberge in Baton Rouge.
“We’re very proud to be the first one to offer sports betting in the area. We just know that’s going to be a huge success, a big hit,” said Robert Urland, vice president and general manager, Horseshoe Casino.
The process to obtain the license is complicated and lengthy, but Quinton Harris, Horseshoe’s Sports Book manager said the team reviewed the application and “made sure everything was tooth and nail and we got everything right.”
He said the process “took a little bit, but we got it down and here we are today, ready to take the first bet.”
Chandler was excited about Sports betting, echoing the late Bossier City Mayor George Dement, who in 1994 enthusiastically welcomed Horseshoe Casino in Bossier City, because of the benefits it would bring to the community.
The revenue sports betting will bring to the Bossier City coffers, Chandler said, will be used to help Bossier City stay clean, protect the people, help fire and police and add another activity for people to enjoy.