Fonner Park is awaiting final legislative approval so that temporary casino construction can begin | Local news from Grand Island


Fonner Park had considered temporarily installing slot machines in its grandstand hall. But Fonner officials realized that they “didn’t want to suppress the important events” that take place in the hall, such as auto shows, craft exhibitions, and the state exhibition’s static exhibits. “These are very important to Fonner Park and Grand Island,” said Kotulak.

In addition, there is more going into the development and construction of a casino complex than the public is aware of. “So it is not enough to put a couple of slot machines in a quarter of a facility for three months while you are building another facility.”

The riders who use the campsite have been relocated to the remaining two-thirds, Kotulak said.

Sharon Haselhoff of Elite Casino Resorts said the company is “just being respectful” of Nebraska officials as the process unfolds.

The Nebraska Racing and Gaming Commission “has a very thorough approach to the process and we are ready for the next step – as soon as it is there,” said Haselhoff.

In the meantime, Elite has been working on its plans for the temporary and permanent facilities on Grand Island.

Haselhoff is the general manager of the Grand Falls Casino and Golf Resort in Larchwood, Iowa, near Sioux Falls, SD. As Regional Vice President of Elite Casino Resorts, she will oversee the Grand Island Casino Resort in Fonner Park.


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