The city council in Cripple Creek, Colorado recently approved round-the-clock liquor sales in gambling halls. Mayor Bruce Brown said, “Our casinos are already open 24/7 so this seems to be a good piece of the puzzle. It will boost their customer base and we’re here to support them and the community. We’re hoping more people will stay longer in the casinos. Anything we can do for our community and our economy, we got to try it.” Kevin Werner, vice president and general manager of the Wildwood Casino, added, “Our industry has been in a decline for many years, and the comparison for gaming is Las Vegas and Atlantic City, and they’re both 24-hour liquor.”
Now Cripple Creek offers the most businesses in Colorado that serve alcohol 24/7. Two casinos in Black Hawk began round-the-clock liquor service earlier this month.
Attorney Robert Runco, representing the Cripple Creek Casino Association, noted the town’s casinos always have been open 24/7, but the organization wanted a way to boost business after 2 a.m. and also to give people who work late shifts more entertainment.
Despite casino operators’ requests, the city council vote did not include allowing customers to take alcohol beverages outdoors. “That would be a little more challenging,” Brown said.
Cripple Creek Police Chief Mike Rulo said he does not anticipate problems because of the added hours for alcohol sales. “We’ve planned for this and are confident we can handle this transition. We’re working with Colorado State Highway Patrol, Teller County Sheriff’s Department and the Division of Gaming and Liquor and we’ll be quite vigilant once this starts.” Rulo noted the change may help reduce closing-time problems. “The hope is that folks can pace themselves and, as they say, ‘Get a room,'” he stated.