During the last couple of months, the state of Nevada has been a very unusual place. Unlike in 2019 and all years before it when there were thousands upon thousands of tourists flocking into Las Vegas casinos, the year 2020 was somewhat different. Due to the coronavirus lockdown, many businesses were shut down, including all casinos in the state.
This has resulted in huge losses for the state. For example, the reported revenue in April was $3.6 million, which is practically pennies when compared to the same period last year when the reported revenue was $936.4 million.
Casinos all over Nevada waited for one important date — June 4 — which is labelled the day of the rebirth of the gambling industry in the state. In other words, all casinos were allowed to operate once again starting June 4. However, it seems that they were right to be very cautious in the first place.
Nevada is also one of the states where protests are taking place right now, and National Guard soldiers are present in Las Vegas. Seeing them fully equipped battling rioters is not a sight that would attract tourists. In fact, the need for National Guard presence might seriously affect the reopening process.
Protests Take Place in Reno and Las Vegas
Reno and Las Vegas are the two biggest gaming hubs in Nevada. The two cities are also places of protests that turned violent, so the National Guard had to be deployed in order to help with restoring peace.
The protests were caused by the death of George Floyd, an African-American who was viciously killed by a police officer. All of that was captured on video, infuriating the masses.
Rioters attacked Reno’s City Hall and its police headquarters, so the city had to call for help. The curfew was then put into place and the National Guard went to the city in order to try to calm things down.
Vegas is a bit quieter than Reno, and, although there were minor skirmishes between the Guard and the protesters, things haven’t been as violent as in some other cities around the US. However, when you combine that with coronavirus fears, you get a very negative picture for casinos. Even people who would consider going to the city’s casinos despite the coronavirus might now feel discouraged due to the presence of the National Guard and rioters.
The opening date remains the same, however. The operators hope that things would calm down with time and allow them to invite visitors into their properties.
Here is another huge test for the gambling industry of Nevada, and that’s also a test for the gambling industry of the entire country. Hopefully, riots won’t affect it as much as coronavirus did. Moreover, operators hope that it won’t last as long as the virus lockdown.
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