Back to a casino

Sher and I always enjoyed casinos either at home or while traveling. COVID-19 stopped that for over a year. Being vaccinated, we’re slowly getting back to “doing things”. After some discussion, we figured it was time to try the Indiana Grand casino near us. (Indiana Grand is a casino and thoroughbred race track, part of the Caesars’ gaming company.)

We hoped a weekday afternoon visit might avoid having to face a big crowd. That strategy worked well, as the parking lots and garage were not filled as we remembered from pre-covid days. The first change we noticed was the requirement to show your driver’ license, the information of which was recorded. The Security fellow said it was for ‘contact tracing’ if needed. Hmmm…

Masks were required, except when you are eating or drinking. The self serve coffee and soda stations have morphed into refreshment stations where an employee serves you your free coffee or soda. Bottled beer was also available for purchase.

Sher enjoyed Great Gorilla slots. By the way Gorilla was very generous this session…

The slot machines were spaced further apart than before. A set of 3 machines had only the two outside positions open. Basically, at any machine you were 6 feet away from the closest player. The blackjack table games had limited seating as well. The only place we saw folks not social distancing was at the Roulette and Craps tables.

Things are definitely different: the buffet is a thing of the past with food available at a snack bar and one restaurant. The noise level is much less. The volume on the slot machines seem to be much lower than pre-covid. With the slot spacing you don’t feel as “crowded”. Oh, and people watching isn’t nearly as much fun with everybody in masks! All in all we did feel comfortable being out in the casino. Good to have that back.

Coronavirus has turned Caesar’s Indiana Grand Casino silent and empty

The Indiana Grand Casino, located between Indianapolis and Cincinnati, has been closed by the COVID-19 pandemic.  Thirteen Indiana casinos were ordered closed on March 16th for a minimum of two weeks. The Grand is our favorite casino when we are in Indiana. The other day we took a drive to “get out of the house” for awhile. Our son drove us by the casino. What a difference from the norm!

Main entrance canopy

The main entrance of the casino is without the usual swarm of valet using vehicles. The huge square under the “GRAND” sign is normally lit up with signage. The pond in the foreground of the picture normally has three big fountains going.

 

 

 

The parking garage, five levels of it, is now completely empty of vehicles. A casino pickup truck blocks the entrance. The west side of the facility, home of the second entrance and the main valet parking lot is also empty. A pair of the casino’s many shuttle buses are blocking that entrance.

The huge parking lots are obviously closed. The normally busy multi-lane road in front of the casino and parking lot is nearly deserted. Only an occasional local resident drives by now. The whole site looks like a scene out of an apocalyptic movie. As more and more states (and countries, for that matter) are ordering lock downs and stay at home rules we’ll see more and more views of empty businesses, streets, subway stations and highways.

President Trump said yesterday that he “sees light at the end of the tunnel” and that he wants “everything raring to go for Easter”.  What do you think?