Maryland Gambling Revenue Rises with Opening of Maryland Live! Poker Room

Map of Maryland

Maryland Casino Revenue Up in August

When the new poker room opened at the Maryland Live! casino late last month, a line of over a thousand people formed just for an opportunity to sit down at one of its 52 tables, according to the Baltimore Sun.

The anticipation surrounding the opening of the room speaks to the larger popularity of land-based casino gambling in the state of Maryland, where last month casino revenue was up due in great part to revenue generated by table games.

Maryland Live! sees big increase, other properties also surge

In August, the four land-based casino properties in the state raked in $71 million in revenue, with the biggest casino – Maryland Live! – also being the most profitable for the month, according to state casino regulators.

Maryland Live! just introduced table gaming this year, which accounts for the improved figures it is posting in 2013 when compared to revenue earned in 2012, when such games were not on offer. In its first four days of business, the casino’s newly-opened poker room brought in an astounding $350,000.

Other casinos in the state also reported increased revenue over the same reporting period last year. In Maryland, a large portion of casino revenue is funneled toward education.

State last year passed law to permit table gaming

Just last year Maryland legalized table gaming in the state, and the crowds who gathered to play poker at Maryland Live! in its first days in business indicate that a ready market was clearly waiting.

With its location nearly smack dab in the center of the Eastern seaboard, Maryland can likely expect a surge in tourism due to its casino expansion, believe many experts. Casinos in Maryland are a quick drive from the Washington D.C. area as well as neighboring states such as Virginia.

But the state is also trying to keep casino dollars from escaping over its own borders just as easily.

One casino patron who was waiting for a spot in the poker room said he was happy to have a local place to play the game.

“It’s nice to be able to stay close to home and know that any money I lose is going to go to the local economy. We’re all a little tired of driving to other states and leaving our money there,” said Baltimore native Jason Cooke.

Casino still working out some issues surrounding room’s opening

And while the long line to enter the poker room attracted headlines, Maryland Live! is hoping to see the process of seating players run a bit more smoothly in the future, as once the novelty of the brand new room wears off, a long wait to get in will surely dissuade some players from visiting.

“We’d hoped to work out all our kinks, but some weaknesses you don’t know about until you open up,” remarked Mike Smith, who is the director of poker for Maryland Live!