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HISTORY OF GAMBLING

Gambling is part of our legends, past and present. Wild Bill Hickok, Bat Masterson, Wyatt Earp, Howard Hughes, Frank Sinatra and the Rat Pack, Steve Wynn, and Donald Trump are just a few of the personalities wrapped up in the story of American gambling.

Everyone has a gambling anecdote. Jokes about gambling filter into every corner of our culture. "This guy walks into a bar with a horse and a pack of cards... "

Gambling is (and always has been) all around us. And yet casinos were illegal everywhere in the US except Nevada for most of the 20th century. That created an odd cultural contrast. Everyone knew about gambling, but few people actually did it. The average American played poker with friends and gambled in a casino once or twice in a lifetime. People learned about the games from watching movies.

Then came Atlantic City, riverboats, Native American casinos, the Internet and now gambling seems to be everywhere, not just conceptually but physically. Most Americans have visited a casino at least once. More than 60% of the adults in the U.S. gamble in some way at least once a year.
 
 
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SUMMING UP

Casinos have special deals for preferred customers. The deals and comps vary from casino to casino, but expect the more opulent establishments to require higher levels of play. In a Strip casino or a downtown Las Vegas casino such as the, Golden Nugget, expect to make minimum $100 bets for at least four hours to get a free room, gourmet meals, and beverages. That's a lot of action, so, if you can't afford this either financially or emotionally, don't play at these levels just for the comps.

If you can afford it, however, and you like the idea of a fancy suite of rooms and personal attention, by al means go for it. I suggest that you study the sections on the table games such as blackjack, so that you end up a winner because of your skill as a player. Then everything is doubly sweet. You’re treated like royalty, and you come home with more money than you started with.

In smaller and less fancy casinos, the minimum requirements are lower. Always ask what they are before playing if you want to be chomped. It doesn't pay to play at ($25) table for four hours only to find you're entitled, nothing, if your main reason for playing at this particular casino was to be chomped to a room and meals. Once you the limits required, see if they fit into your financial emotional setup. If uncomfortable with the limits, let it go. Take a pass and go to another casino.
 
 
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