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Four windy casino resorts break the ground

After a six-year delay, the Pokagon Band of Potawatomi Indians finally began construction of the Four Winds Casino Resort in New Buffalo Township last week.

Run by Lakes Entertainment, Inc. for the Pokémon Band, Four Winds Casino Resort will have 3,000 slot machines, 90 table games, 20 poker tables, and six restaurants. Construction will begin later this month and is expected to be completed in about 14 months. The project is expected to create about 1,000 construction jobs and 2,000 casino jobs.

"We want to congratulate and thank them for all their support during the years-long groundbreaking ceremony," said John Miller, the tribal president of the Pocagon Band of Potawatomi Indians. "We are excited about this historic event. It has been a long time coming and we have been working very hard for many years. The groundbreaking ceremony will be a celebration of the development of the Pocagon Band as we move on the path of self-reliance and begin the construction phase of the tribal project," Miller said.

"We're looking forward to collaborating with the Pocagon Band to make their casino project a success," said Tim Kope, president and CFO of Lakes Entertainment, Inc. "Our goal is to provide an exciting and fun gaming experience."

The groundbreaking ceremony will kick off a day-long celebration for supporters of tribes and communities. The ceremony will include the release of a tribe's blessing, a drum group, and four balloons representing the four winds.

The four balloons will not only represent the tribe's past, present, and future, but will also represent their partnership with the community. Representing each of these four characteristics while releasing the balloons are Seniors Council President Marge Moody, Tribe President Miller, and Pocagon Band Youth Council officials. There will be New Buffalo Towns Supervisor Agnes Conway, as well as Chair Marcus Winchester, Vice Chair John Morso, Deputy Speaker Margaret Mercero, Treasury Secretary Chuck Mercero.

Special promotional prizes will be attached for each cluster, and lucky stars will be able to redeem them when the Four Winds Casino Resort opens.

Pokagon Band will pay 2% of its e-game revenue to the designated Local Revenue Sharing and 8% to the Michigan Strategic Fund, as required by a 1998 tribal national gaming contract.

The tribe will also provide additional funding beyond what is required under the contract for the Pocagon Fund. A community foundation of tribal and local community members will distribute revenue-sharing funds from the Four Winds Casino Resort to local communities surrounding New Buffalo Township, including local school districts.
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Wednesday, March 20, 2024
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