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Great Blue Heron Charity Casino finds its niche

20 May 2008

PORT PERRY, Ontario – As reported by the Times & Transcript: "By southern Ontario standards, it's kind of out of the way. But that doesn't keep the Great Blue Heron Charity Casino on the Scucog First Nation from being popular. Caption

"A spectacular and whimsical fountain inspired by the flow of Niagara Falls and the industrial uses it supports forms the centrepiece of the Fallsview Casino complex.

"…Great Blue Heron's ostensibly a destination casino in a tourist resort area, but there are no hotels in sight, no golf course or theatre, not even a view of Lake Scugog, even though by virtue of me crossing a short bridge near Port Perry, I'm now on Scugog Island, completely surrounded by the lake I can't see.

"…It may not have looked like much on the outside, but inside the Great Blue Heron is lovely and the staff is lovelier.

"…The interior paint job is holding up just fine, and from the inside, the curvilinear structure is dramatic and truly striking.

"…A more welcome sight, at least according to the biases I've developed from touring seven different casinos in three different provinces, is that your first experience of the casino is its large and well-appointed table game room. Thousands of slot machine enthusiasts can't be wrong, but for my money, a casino doesn't really feel like a casino until you've seen polished wood and green velvet. A lot of people at Great Blue agree with me, it seems. Every single table, more than 60 of them, is in play, and Jay Patry, the shift manager, tells me they're reconfiguring things soon to add at least a couple more card tables.

"The casino's 550 slot machines are in a completely separate room and unlike many a casino, you pass the tables to get to them rather than the other way around.

"…While the casinos in Windsor and Niagara Falls and even Casino Rama up near Orillia are all vastly bigger, Great Blue Heron is doing very well finding its niche. The only casino around for many miles, as Moncton's will be, the Scugog Island facility has a bright future…"

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