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Floating casino to chug away soon

John Gibson

Evansville’s floating casino will soon pull away from the riverfront after more than two decades of gaming. 

Tropicana plans to open a new land-based casino along Riverside Drive this Friday.

The riverboat has been docked at Evansville since 1995, two years after state legislators approved gaming and local voters approved a referendum.

Former State Rep. Dennis Avery voted against the measure in 1993, and told WNIN he would have voted “no” on land-based gaming too…

("Had I been in the legislature I would have voted against it because I believe it's just expanding gambling even further. So I would not have supported it. However, it's a fact now and we need to do what we can to make sure that the system is successful.")

State Senator Vaneta Becker was a State Rep. at the time. She said she also had reservations about gaming, but voted for it after the referendum passed…

("I felt like if the public supported it and really a big key for the whole thing was what the riverboats could do for the community and that's proven to be very positive as far as economic development.")

Gaming revenue has become an important part of the city and county budgets.

The new $50 million land-based casino will feature gaming all on one floor with new dining and entertainment options.

Tropicana has also contributed $1 million to the effort to move LST 325 to the current riverboat location.

Credit John Gibson
Exterior of the new Tropicana casino on Riverside Drive

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