Sportsbook

State Rep. Dave Jacoby, D-District 74, places a $20 bet on the Chicago Cubs at the Aug. 15 grand opening of the Elite Sportsbook at Riverside Casino and Golf Resort.

A new era in gaming launched at Riverside Casino and Golf Resort last week.

At an Aug. 15 ceremony, the casino officially launched its Elite Sportsbook on the first day of legal sports betting in Iowa.

“The Elite Sportsbook is going to be a great place to come watch a game with friends; host your fantasy league draft; cheer on the Hawkeyes, Cyclones and Panthers, cheer on your favorite team; or cheer on the team you want to put a little bit of money on that particular day or week,” Riverside General Dan Franz said. “We felt like it was important to be here on the first day. It’s important because we strive to give our customers the best experience possible, and we feel like sports wagering is just going to enhance that experience.”

Elite Sportsbook is located in the casino’s Draft Day Sports Lounge, which was recently renovated as part of an $11 million project at Riverside.

Riverside opted to operate its own sportsbook rather than contracting out the operation.

“We happen to be the only Iowa-run sportsbook in the state of Iowa,” CEO of Elite Casino Resorts Dan Kehl said. “We like to take control of our destiny and take control of our operation.”

Elite Casino Resorts owns the Riverside casino, as well as River City in Davenport and Grand Falls in Larchwood.

The company is partnering with BetWorks for the sports betting technology.

BetWorks operates the system and sets the betting lines.

Franz said that the timing of the opening was important.

“I think the BetWorks guys would agree that the football season is the bread and butter of sports wagering,” Franz said. “The fact that we’re ready is going to give us a nice step ahead in terms of getting things started with regional sports wagering.”

Kehl praised everyone’s efforts getting the sportsbook up and running just three months after the legislation was signed into law by Gov. Kim Reynolds.

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James Jennings, News Editor at The News, can be reached at news@kalonanews.com

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