The Only Casino in Texas: A Tale of Turning $20 into 7 Cents

Growing up in Wisconsin, there seemed to be a casino every 30-40 miles. I know Minnesota is the same way, but instead of having a 21 gambling age like Wisconsin, it had an 18 gambling age. I remember my buddies would border hop to Minnesota to gamble. Understanding the odds were against me and I was bound to lose money, gambling never appeared to me much.

For a state as large as Texas, it’s crazy to think there is only 1 casino in the whole state. This is on the Kickapoo Indian Reservation, which is right by the Mexican border in Eagle Pass. After doing a little research, it looks like the moral agenda in Texas trumped the expansion of casinos, so that is why there is only one in Texas. The crazy thing is, there are casinos right on the border in Louisiana, Oklahoma, and New Mexico. I drive past a large casino on the Texas-Oklahoma border every time I go up to Wisconsin.

Since I was in Eagle Pass for work, I decided to check out the casino. You had to drive down this really narrow road to get to the casino.

The hotel and casino are pretty big.

You could tell by the large number of handicapped parking spots, who their main clientele were.

I proceeded to walk inside and you could already see there was a ton of different machines to play.

Of course they had the bingo hall off to the side. In Texas, there are a lot of independent bingo halls and they seem to be popular. In Wisconsin, the bingo hall is just something off to the side of the main casino.

Every casino I’ve been to has free soda. This one was no different.

I decided to hit up a few machines.

I noticed there were ash trays by each machine. I’m so used to smoking bans, but remembered casinos are exempt from that.

Usually, tobacco is cheaper on an Indian reservation. This wasn’t the case here with packs of cigarettes being $10.

In a casino, there are definitely a lot of places to eat. There is also at least 1 bar. When my friends would go to the casino, I would head straight to the bar because I felt I was an instant winner each time I went there, versus just losing my money.

I decided to go to the Cilantro Mexican Grill and get some tacos.

After eating, I walked around and hit up some more machines. Each time I would cash out and get my cash out voucher to go to another machine.

Eventually, my cash out voucher was at $0.07. I had to cash out since I wasn’t able to play any more machines.

When everything was said and done, I converted $20 into 7 cents.

It was cool visiting the only casino in Texas. It was obviously like any other casino I’ve been to, but it was kind of crazy to think this is the only place in the State of Texas I can do this.

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