Casinos In Deadwood South Dakota – Let loose in historic Deadwood, South Dakota. There is no judgment here. Meet our Old West legends, learn about our Wild West history, go shopping, experience our live entertainment, unique events and see how the West was really won in our arcades, saloons and casinos – now with live craps, roulette and sports betting.
Deadwood is surrounded by the Black Hills National Forest, making it an ideal base camp for outdoor activities such as hiking, biking, fishing and boating, hunting, cross-country skiing, downhill skiing and snowboarding. If you prefer motorized adventure, bring your own ride or rent a UTV or snowmobile from a Deadwood area outfitter.
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Find places to eat and feed your fancy… Deadwood style. Deadwood’s chefs offer a taste of banquets, buffets, brunches and four-star dinners. Restaurant options range from casual to upscale, and cuisines range from American and hearty Midwestern to ethnic and regional.
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Deadwood is home to approximately 1,700 guest rooms, cabins, lodges and campgrounds. Choose from a variety of historic hotels, new modern resort properties, and many amenities that will make your stay in Deadwood historic!
We have a few tour companies in Deadwood. Walk in the footsteps of legends on a guided tour of Deadwood and the surrounding area. Learn about the Gold Rush, the Wild West, and how Deadwood went from a lawless gold camp to today’s gambling town.
The discovery of gold in the Black Hills in 1874 sparked one of the nation’s last great gold rushes. In 1876, miners moved to the northern part of the Black Hills. There they encountered a stream full of dead trees and a stream full of gold… and Deadwood was born. Almost overnight, the tiny gold camp turned into a town that played by its own rules, attracting outlaws, gamblers and gunslingers along with gold seekers. Wild Bill Hickok was one of those men who came to seek fortune. But just a few weeks after his arrival, he was busted holding a poker hand of aces and eights – forever known as the Dead Man’s Hand.
Calamity Jane also made a name for herself in these parts and is buried next to Hickok in Mount Moriah Cemetery. Other legends like Potato Creek Johnny, Seth Bullock and Al Swearengen created their legends and legacies in this tiny Black Hills town.
Deadwood Commission Closes Casinos, Bars And Restaurants
Deadwood has survived three major fires and numerous economic hardships, making it yet another Old West ghost town. But in 1989, limited-payroll gambling was legalized and Deadwood was reborn. We’ve been hosting guests since 1876 – and now we’re pretty good at it! Actor Kevin Costner is parting ways with his Midnight Star restaurant in Deadwood, South Dakota, after 26 years in the business. A gambling store on Main Street is the latest casualty of the historic town.
Deadwood’s main street is after Kevin Costner closed the Midnight Star. (Image: South Dakota Department of Tourism)
Costner opened the Midnight Star in 1991 after falling in love with Deadwood on his first visit in 1990 to film Dances with Wolves. Throughout its history, Midnight Star has held significant relics from Costner’s storied film career.
“When I opened Midnight Star, it was because of my deep love for Deadwood and the Black Hills of South Dakota and their historical significance in our country’s story,” Costner told the Rapid City Journal. “So it is with a heavy heart that I must say that today the lights of the Midnight Star go out for the last time.”
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One of the most prominent events in Deadwood, illegally established on Indian land during the Back Hills Gold Rush in 1876, was the murder of Wild Bill Hickok, who was said to be playing poker and holding two aces and two eights, now infamously known as the “Dead Man’s Hand.”
Deadwood’s gaming revenue fell another 3.5 percent in 2017. Since 2008, many games have been closed due to a decline in play and attendance.
Unlike Atlantic City, where the economy tanked during the U.S. recession and struggled to recover afterward as neighboring states began gambling to revive tax revenue, Deadwood has struggled in recent years. South Dakota’s historic town no longer has the lure of bringing tourists to the remote hills.
“We look at Deadwood as an integrated destination that has all the components, and gaming is just one of those components, although it’s important because it’s the economic engine of Deadwood,” Rodman told Black Hills’ FOX affiliate. “Historically, September has been a good month for Deadwood games when the empty litters come to visit.”
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Deadwood legalized gambling in 1989 and immediately brought new revenue to the town. Tourism experts believe Deadwood needs to undergo another makeover to remarket itself to potential visitors.
“All destinations have to evolve over time, even those that want to stay the same,” Rosen College of Hospitality professor Alan Fyall told CNBC in 2015 about Deadwood’s struggles. “Changes can be very subtle and not necessarily expensive, but ‘refreshing’ a destination’s brand helps maintain the status quo and attract new markets.” Costner’s fuzzy memory
Local media reports that Midnight Star opened in 1991, two years after the Games were approved. But in the depositions, Kevin Costner seems to remember the opening in 1989.
But Costner first visited Deadwood during the filming of “Dances.” The Best Picture Oscar winner’s production ran for four months, from July 1989 to November. Costner, who not only starred in but also directed the more than three-hour epic, presumably had little time to open the restaurant.
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