Table games in the cards in Pa.

September 24, 2009 4:32:46 PM PDT
Traffic is up at the Philadelphia Park Casino where remnants of a recession are nowhere to be found."It's an escape from reality," Marcy Hutchinson of West Trenton said.

Philadelphia Park is rebranding itself as Parx, a huge new casino to open in December.

Cash strapped state lawmakers looking for multiple millions in new taxes and fees are suddenly embracing the idea of table games in Pennsylvania.

Parx was designed for all sorts of table games, but planners put up a temporary wall screening the space figuring approval could take years. Now with table games on a fast track in Harrisburg, the wall could come down by April and the room behind it could be full of table games

Many at Philadelphia Park Casino go to Atlantic City to play cards; if table games are approved for Pennsylvania, it could mean more losses for America's favorite playground.

"I think they are going to lose money. I think the people that are going to go to Atlantic City now are people that are going to the beach," Cuong Vu of Northeast Philadelphia said.

Atlantic City's loss would be Pennsylvania's gain. Proponents predict thousands of new jobs statewide and at Parx maybe hundreds.

"Not only would we be hiring for the new Parx casino in every single position, management, food and beverage, slot operation, but we're also going to have hire an entire table games force," Darlene Monzo of the Philadelphia Park Casino said.

Parx is planning for a major job fair next month.


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