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Rivers Casino Schenectady celebrates five years

5 February 2022

(PRESS RELEASE) -- Rivers Casino & Resort Schenectady will mark its 5th year of operations this Tuesday, 8 February 2022. It was five years ago, on 8 February 2017, that Rivers first opened its doors to excited casino gaming fans throughout the Capital Region and beyond. Rivers will also be celebrating its 5th anniversary with $5 food and drink specials, gift card giveaways and more.

“We’re so thrilled to be celebrating this milestone with our team members, guests, and supporters throughout the region” said Rivers Casino & Resort General Manager, Rick Richards. “While the last five years haven’t been without its challenges, I’m extremely proud of our achievements in bringing the very best in gaming and entertainment to our guests. Our commitment to the city, county and the Capital Region has never been greater and we’re looking forward to an even brighter future.”

Rivers is celebrating its 5th Anniversary with $5 food and drink specials including domestic draft beers at Van Slyck’s, Flipt, and Johnny’s To Go; Tito and Jack Daniels cocktails at Van Slyck’s and The Landing Bar; 2 slices of cheese pizza at Johnny’s To Go; and a crispy buffalo fried chicken sandwich at Flipt. Offers available during regular outlet hours of operation while supplies last.

In addition, every Thursday between Noon and 8 p.m. during the month of February, 20 guests will be randomly selected to win a $25 Rivers gift card. Plus, every Friday between 8 p.m. and 9 p.m. during the $20,000 Birthday Bucks giveaway, guests actively playing with a Rush Rewards Card could win $1,000 in Slot Play. A total of 20 guests will win during the month.

The Rivers Casino & Resort Schenectady story is one of urban revitalization and promises kept:

- Rivers promised to invest $300 million in Schenectady and revitalize a polluted industrial brownfield. To date, the company has invested over $330 million and turned the property into an economic catalyst that has helped open up Schenectady’s waterfront to city residents and tourists.

- Because of Rivers, another $220 million has been invested at Mohawk Harbor, including urban residential housing, for a total of more than $550 million. This is the largest waterfront development in Upstate New York.

- Rivers has helped generate almost $100 million in new infrastructure and private investments near the Mohawk Harbor.

- Rivers said it would create 1,000 jobs. This promise has been exceeded, including with more than 700 union positions. Current post-Covid shutdown count is 853 and growing. The casino offers good pay and benefits (including healthcare and 401k) and a career path in the gaming and hospitality industry for a diverse workforce that provides more than $43 million in wages to the region. Rivers also offers free on-the-job training, including 20 Dealer Academies since it opened.

- Rivers pays $4 million per year in property taxes. It is the only casino in New York state paying full property taxes. In fact, Rivers pays more property tax than the other three casinos combined.

- Rivers paid the full mortgage recording tax of $5 million. It also paid full sales taxes on all materials used to build and equip the casino. Both the city and County of Schenectady also received $2.5 million when the original casino license fee was paid.

To date, Rivers has paid more than $220 million in state taxes.

- Rivers also pays a cut of its slot tax revenues to the City of Schenectady, Schenectady County, and neighboring counties. The city & county each receive 5%, and nearby counties split 10%. This has allowed the City of Schenectady to deliver five straight tax cuts to city residents (last year the city had a slight increase due to impact of Covid, and diminished casino revenue due to the 6-month COVID-related shutdown).

- Rivers Casino & Resort is ranked the #1 Tourist Destination in the Capital Region (Albany Business Review). Rivers is the economic engine that has helped Schenectady County lead the Capital Region in tourism spending increases, with an increase of 16% in 2017 and 10.5% in 2018.

- Rivers has hosted over 600 meetings, conferences, banquets, and special events (concerts, dinner shows, MMA etc.) at its Event Center since opening, bringing thousands of people to Schenectady County.

- Rivers was the first casino in New York State to open a Sportsbook for legal wagers on sporting events (July 16, 2019), bringing additional visitors and international attention to Schenectady. Since opening, the Rivers Sportsbook has consistently been ranked #1 in the state.

- Rivers’ “Harbor Jam” summer concert series brings thousands of visitors to the Mohawk Harbor Amphitheater, which was voted #1 “Live Performance Venue” by Daily Gazette readers.

- Rivers is a proud community partner, with its team members logging over 7,000 hours of volunteer time – all dedicated to charitable and community organizations throughout the Capital Region. In total, nearly 1-million-dollars has been donated. In 2021 alone, Rivers gave over $235,000 in goods, services, and cash donations to over 50 charitable and community organizations.

- Following the six-month COVID 19 related shut down from March until September of 2020, Rivers developed a comprehensive reopening plan addressing crowd management, cleanliness and disinfection, air quality and circulation, monitoring, isolation, and social distancing to provide the safest environment possible for its guests and team members.

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