Gaming centre bliss

Impressions on Castlegar's new gaming outlet

I guess I’ve always been a bit of a gambler.  At any rate, I enjoy going to casinos and gaming centres and having a go at the slots.  If I hit a big win, I’m usually quite euphoric, and if I leave some money behind, that’s okay.

However, I don’t worry about the few losses I’ve had at gaming centres. I can afford it, or I wouldn’t go.  Also, I’ve had enough big wins over several years that I’m probably not too far below breaking even.

I’ve heard people talking about the riffraff characters that play slots in gaming centres.  Supposedly, these are derelict sorts who drop their last dollar just to press the slot button.  In all the years I’ve been visiting casinos and gaming centres, I’ve not met any of these desperate types.

Most of the people I’ve met have been dressed neatly and are fairly well-to-do.  They seem to be quite comfortable in a gaming centre environment and take the losing and the winning matter-of-factly.  They like being there because they view what they’re doing as entertainment.

In fact, that’s what BC Lotto and the City of Castlegar have brought to the City and area—purely another form of entertainment. This Chances gaming centre will be another place that locals can be entertained.  The variety of slots guarantee a lot of fun trying to beat the odds and take home more than you began with.

And if you limit yourself to $100 and lose it, that’s not much different than having dinner and few rounds of drinks at the Element.  The evening I was at the local Gaming Centre, I won a $100.64 jackpot and then spent a couple of hours playing with the house’s money before I went home.  It was quite enjoyable.

I was asked how this Gaming Centre matches up to similar places I have played slots.  To begin with, it isn’t as big a centre as many I have been in, and it doesn’t have as many slots.  The Castlegar Gaming Center has only 100 machines, whereas the casinos I often visit have anywhere from 450 to 1400.

However, the slot machines in the local centre are top-notch machines.  They have all the flashing lights, they fade and fill as required, and they pay as you go along.  Most of the machines also have a bonus system, which means that if you hit three bonus icons, you can gain quite a bit of money in a short period of time. What I look for is a machine that hits the bonuses quickly, and then I cash out while I’m way ahead.

The machines chosen for this casino are mostly penny machines. However, you have to play more than a penny to be in the game.  The best way to do so is to choose the total number of rows and then make a bet of one or two to complement it. Each spin may then cost you about 40 to 60 cents.

I’ve heard people talk about gaming centres as places of evil.  I don’t get it! I’ve never felt any debauchery or ugliness or threats in these places.  The runners come around and serve you drinks (usually soft drinks or coffee), they make change for you if you need it, and they pay you outright if you have a big win.

In addition to the slots, this Gaming Centre is set up for bingo—electronic bingo at its best, and we all know there is a lot of interest in bingo in our area.

If you’re not into playing bingo or slots, you can visit Chances for dinner or lunch in a pleasant lounge or simply have a drink and relax.  At any rate, you should travel out to the Gaming Centre and have a look.