Yet More Blackjack in Pennsylvania

Have you heard that phrase ‘When it rains, it pours?’

That could be said about blackjack in Pennsylvania. It is raining blackjack in Pennsylvania.

Already six casinos have received, set up, tested and opened blackjack tables. Those six casinos would be the Meadows, the Rivers, the Presque Isle Downs in western Pennsylvania and the Mohegan Sun, Mount Airy and Hollywood casinos in eastern Pennsylvania.

Now blackjack, and other table games like craps and roulette, will be coming to the Philadelphia area. Thankfully it is not another three casinos; this time it is only two: the Parx Casino and Harrah’s. Parx is located in Bensalem and Harrah’s in Chester.

Both casinos will be working their table games test today and hope to open said table games at 6 am on Sunday morning.

Ever since table games were approved earlier this year it seems that every brick and mortar casino in Pennsylvania is jumping up to install table games.

The funny thing about the sudden downpour of blackjack and other table games is that table games is not where the money is in casinos games of late. Vegas can attest that money comes from the slots machines. Popularity seems to be with the slots too.

So why the mad dash to install, staff and offer table games?

The only guess that I can offer is that casinos are hoping to draw more traffic, pulling it away from Atlantic City, by offering more gambling options to patrons. Yes, offering table games is could bring in more money but here is a little secret: with the offering of table games, these casinos have also been allowed to increase the number of slot machines to help accommodate an increased number of casino patrons.

So in short the table games were a means to an end. Not that blackjack players in Pennsylvania will care. They are just happy to not have to drive a long distance to play their favorite game.

More Blackjack for Pennsylvania

On Thursday of last week three brick and mortar casinos in western Pennsylvania opened the blackjack tables, drawing patrons away from the long haul drive to Atlantic City to enjoy some blackjack.

Unfortunately for Atlantic City the run of Pennsylvania casinos is not at an end yet. This past Tuesday, July 13th, saw the opening of blackjack tables in three eastern Pennsylvania casinos.

Blackjack players all over Pennsylvania are very excited with the addition of their favorite casino game in six casinos. This follows months of back and forth political arguments earlier this year about whether or not the State would allow table games like blackjack, roulette and craps to be added to their game offerings. But the demand was there and the income to the State in gaming taxes was needed. Everyone wins. Well, except for Atlantic City.

For decades Atlantic City was the mecca of East Coast gambling in the United States. But with the down turn in the economy and a lack of funds trickling down the government hill, states began looking at other ways to bring in money.

Pennsylvania is not the only state to look to gambling. Florida recently settled a long standing dispute with the Seminole tribe about blackjack there. Florida will be making $1.5 billion over the next five years from their deal with the Seminoles.

But with the addition of blackjack to the casino games at the Rivers, Meadows and Presque Isle Downs casinos in western Pennsylvania and the Mohegan Sun, Mount Airy and Hollywood casinos in eastern Pennsylvania could spell even more trouble for Atlantic City.

Not only will the time-honored East Coast gambling destination be competing with these six improved casinos next door, they might also be competing against online gambling. New Jersey is looking at legalizing online gambling for New Jersey residents that would make the competition even greater for Atlantic City.

While Pennsylvania blackjack players are quite happy with the new table games in six of their casinos, we shall have to see how Atlantic City fares over the next few years. Will it be able to keep itself afloat or will it sink in the ocean that is the gambling industry.

Blackjack for Community College

If you love blackjack there just might be a program at community colleges that would be right up your alley.

Remember earlier this year when Pennsylvania approved their casinos to have table games like blackjack? With all those new tables and casino patrons wanting to sit down to play some blackjack, those casinos are in need of something: blackjack dealers.

Northampton Community College purchased the blackjack dealer training course from a community college in southern New Jersey. This way Northampton could offer the course to those who were interested in becoming blackjack dealers.

Imagine going to school and only studying blackjack.

The training is necessary if those who are interested in becoming dealers really want to be blackjack dealers. By the end of the course dealers in training have studied the game of blackjack, all the rules that apply to it, card and chip handling and CPR. Yes, CPR too.

But becoming a blackjack isn’t as simple as taking a course. Students will be tested with written and performance tests. Their potential employer, which is the Mount Airy casino, will also be judging them on their overall performance as students. Mount Airy wants to see what their work ethics, dedication and motivation are like. Judging their overall performance in the class also allows the casino to see how well they interact with people.

Mount Airy is looking to hire these blackjack students right away, at least those that pass their written and performance tests. But for those students who they feel don’t quite measure up, they won’t be hired right away and will be encouraged to practice more in hopes that they can hire those students at a later date.

And finally before they can be hired all blackjack students need to pass license requirements in order to be declared blackjack dealers.

It sounds like a lot but if you have that much love of the game it’s well worth the effort. When Pennsylvania was debating on whether to make blackjack tables legal or not, one of the pro points was that it would create jobs. Of the eighty seven who took the blackjack course, it is believed that they will all pass and that Mount Airy is interested in hiring them…or at least those who need no further training. It’s good to see the actual jobs being created and to see the community benefiting from legalizing blackjack tables.

Hey, Florida, those of you who are opposed to the Seminole blackjack tables, take note—that community in Pennsylvania is benefiting from blackjack through job creation. The same could happen for Florida.