Sports Betting Is Live at the Quapaw Nation’s Saracen Casino Annex in Arkansas

The Saracen Casino Annex, (a smaller version of the forthcoming casino resort) with about 300 slot machines, opened last week, on Friday, September 27. The 15,000-square-foot annex is connected to the Saracen Q Store.

While the Quapaw Nation doesn’t offer sports betting at its casinos in Oklahoma, patrons have started placing bets on sporting events at its Saracen Casino Annex in Pine Bluff, Arkansas. 

On Monday, the Arkansas Racing Commission approved sports betting at Saracen Casino Resort, and by Tuesday at 8 a.m., the casino annex — a smaller version of the forthcoming gaming attraction — was taking wagers. 

The Nation’s Downstream Development Authority broke ground on its $350 million casino resort in Arkansas in August, with plans to debut the resort in June 2020, featuring a 300-room hotel and an 80,000-square-foot gaming floor with more than 2,000 slot machines and 50 table games. Six months later, an entertainment venue is slated to open.

The annex, a smaller casino with about 300 slot machines, opened last week, on Friday, September 27. The 15,000-square-foot annex is connected to the Saracen Q Store.

International Game Technology (IGT) is providing the sports betting platform known as “Play Shot.” 

The annex has debuted a “sample sports book” featuring kiosks that permit smaller wagers with maximum bets of $500. Initially, patrons can place bets on football, basketball, baseball, ice hockey, soccer, tennis, golf, auto racing and fighting/boxing.

Saracen Casino Resort is the Quapaw Nation’s third gaming operation. The Tribe additionally owns and operates Downstream Casino Resort in Quapaw, Oklahoma, and Quapaw Casino in Miami, Oklahoma.

The forthcoming Saracen Casino Resort is promised to “supercharge the region’s economy” in Pine Bluff.

Today headquartered in Quapaw in Ottawa County, Oklahoma, on a 13,000-acre Tribal jurisdictional area, the Quapaw people inhabited Arkansas before forced relocation to Oklahoma in the 1830s. The casino is named after revered Quapaw Tribal leader, Chief Saracen, who was laid to rest in Pine Bluff in 1832 at age 97. The Tribal entity Saracen Development, LLC, projects that construction of the resort will create about 1,000 immediate jobs that will last about 11 months. Shortly before opening in spring 2020, Saracen Casino Resort will hire about 1,100 permanent employees.

In November, Arkansas voters passed an amendment to legalize four casinos in the state—in Jefferson and Pope counties, at a West Memphis dog track and a Hot Springs horse track. Arkansas became the 25th state to legalize commercial gambling and the 41st state with legal casino gambling, including Tribal casino operations, according to the American Gaming Association.