Florida Casino Talks, Then Balks, Regarding Future Plans

Written by:
Thomas Somach
Published on:

MIAMI — The owners of the Magic City Casino in Miami are planning to go where no one in gambling has gone before.

Forget about betting on the turn of a card or the roll of the dice—how about legally wagering on yourself to sink a basket or hit a  home run and then collecting big bucks when you do so?

Gambling 911 earlier this week sat down with Sandra Rodriguez, spokeswoman for Magic City Casino, to find out more about the new endeavor, called Sports Challenge America, and she was happy to tell us all about it.

But when Gambling 911 turned the conversation to the subject of legal sports betting and whether the casino would eventually like to offer it, Rodriguez suddenly clammed up.

Here is a transcript of that conversation:

Gambling 911: For those unfamiliar with the project, can you tell us a little about Sports Challenge America?

Sandra Rodriguez: Sports Challenge America will feature full-size and scaled-down versions of athletic fields and courts, including baseball, football, soccer, basketball, tennis and golf as outdoor activities. There will also be indoor activities like bowling and virtual reality studios.

G9: So how does the betting work—do you bet on yourself or on other people?

SR: There is no betting allowed on the results of other people. The facility will allow individuals to compete for pre-determined monetary awards by successfully completing sports-based skill challenges solely based on themselves. A fixed prize will be offered for a fixed entry fee.

G9: Anything else?

SR: Tournaments and facility rentals will also serve as sources of revenue.

G9: Does anything like Sports Challenge America  exist anywhere else in the USA?

SR: Sports Challenge America will be the first facility of its kind.

G9: We understand there are actually going to be two Sports Challenge Americas—where are they going to be and when will they be opening?

SR: We hope to open a Miami facility in September of this year and a Bonita Springs facility, on Florida’s west coast, in January of 2023.

G9: When the Seminole Indian tribe started offering mobile sports betting in Florida last year, Magic City Casino said the tribe didn’t have the authority to do so and successfully sued to stop it. Can you tell us why Magic City sued them? And do you want to get legal sports betting for Magic City Casino and/or Sports Challenge America?

SR: We have no additional comment.

By Tom Somach

Gambling 911 Chief Correspondent


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