Iowa Casino Bets on Minnesotans - Monday 10th of April 2006

NORTHWOOD, Iowa – As reported by the Des Moines Register: "The Diamond Jo Casino opens this week in rural Worth County, trying to lure thousands of Minnesotans across the state border with farm-style meals and old-fashioned slot machines.

"Leaders of Worth County, which has struggled to attract economic development and has seen its population dwindle to less than 8,000, are hoping the Northwood casino will help turn around their fortunes.

"The agriculture-themed $40 million gambling complex, located on Interstate Highway 35 just four miles south of the Iowa-Minnesota line, is projected to draw more than 600,000 guests annually. About 60 percent to 70 percent of the players are expected to come from southern Minnesota and the Minneapolis-St. Paul area, said Jesus Aviles , the Diamond Jo's general manager.

"…A consultant's study for the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission has shown that more than half of the 20 million gamblers who visit Iowa's casinos every year are from bordering states, and the Northwood casino is likely to increase that percentage, said Jack Ketterer, the commission's administrator. The Diamond Jo is the first on the Minnesota border…"

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