Small Casino Town Preparing For Big Leagues

With new rules that are going to push it closer to Las Vegas-style gambling, the small Colorado casino town of Blackhawk is getting ready to handle the new crowds as it becomes more of a draw.
April 20, 2009, 9am PDT | Nate Berg
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"On July 2, a new state law goes into effect that raises betting limits to $100, and allows Colorado's casinos to remain open around the clock and add craps and roulette tables. In anticipation, casinos are expanding their pits, sprucing up their entertainment options and replacing all-you-can-eat buffets with broader dining choices."

"With swankier accommodations and larger jackpots in the offing, local officials expect Black Hawk to become a bigger draw for high rollers from the Denver area and beyond."

"Black Hawk sits at the mouth of Gregory Gulch, which kicked off the Colorado gold rush 150 years ago, earning the area the sobriquet "the richest square mile on earth." The mining boom declined in the 1900s, but the town's fortunes turned around after Colorado passed a law in 1990 allowing for limited gaming in a few former mining towns, provided some of the profits went toward historic preservation. Now about a dozen casinos can be found along Black Hawk's main stretch."

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Published on Friday, April 17, 2009 in The New York Times
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