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Summer Festivals throughout the South

summer fest

Summertime in the Southeast means it’s time to take advantage of the region’s many seasonal festivals and outdoor events. Whether you enjoy music festivals, browsing craft and artisan fairs, or just want to consume as much BBQ as your stomach will allow, the following round-ups offer many delightful options, and some great gambling action nearby!


The Lifestyle of a High Roller

shutterstock_82696897We’ve all dreamt about it. Sitting down at a blackjack table betting hundreds or thousands of dollars on a hand like it’s a drop in the bucket. And then you wake up and realize $10 hands are all you can afford. Sure, the casino may give you a free buffet here and there for your play, but nothing compared to what they give to a high roller.

If you are fortunate enough to bet big on a regular basis, the casino will take care of you. How so? By giving you just about anything you want. That includes free suites, free bets, free food at fancy restaurants, free booze, and if you really bet big, they may even fly you to the casino on a private jet. The money they spend pleasing high rollers is chump change compared to the amount the casino expects a high roller to drop at the casino. These types of gamblers are referred to as ‘whales’ in the industry, and they are highly sought after by every casino in the world.


Inside the Numbers: Preakness Stakes by America’s Best Racing

Whether you come to enjoy the infield fest or to dream about a Triple Crown possibility after the day is over, the Preakness Stakes is a great experience. While we can only guess the amount of black-eyed Susans and crab cakes that will be consumed at Pimlico, we do have some interesting numbers that go along with the Preakness.


Southern Gaming’s Celebrity Derby Party Hits the Jackpot!

56891_SOGD_Logo_v3aIf you are looking for a great Derby party where you can see celebrities, dance to one of the hottest bands around, enjoy a premium open bar that includes the best bourbons in the world, and feast on a great selection of bourbon themed food, we’ve found your party… Jim Beam’s Derby Poker Celebrity Bourbon Bash presented by Draft Kings.

The event is hosted by Hall of Fame basketball Coach Denny Crum, and poker professional Robert Williamson III on Oaks Eve (April 30) at The Olmsted in Louisville, Kentucky and is much more than a poker tournament.

Guests will enjoy a premium open bar, food stations, live music by Tony & The Tanlines and more,

In addition, this year marks the 35-year anniversary of Coach Crum’s 1980 National Basketball Championship. Several members from the 1980 team will be on hand and there will be a special airing of the championship game from 7:00 – 8:00, as well as limited edition bottles of Jim Beam and posters commemorating the team.


A Day In The Life Of… A Hotel Concierge

Concierge GraphicDiane Schure loves her job. Really, really loves it. Every day, she stands behind the Concierge desk at the Carefree Resort & Convention Center in Carefree, Arizona, and helps her guests find the perfect food, entertainment, or exploration experience.

Schure, who also serves as the president of the Arizona chapter of the National Concierge Association, says she came to the career by chance. A friend of hers was working as a concierge at Carefree, and mentioned that she thought Diane would also be great at the job. So she left behind her previous careers, a school teacher and owner of a chain of tire stores. (more…)

The Latest From Aristocrat Technologies

Aristocrat Technologies  has long been an innovator in the way it uses its reels and bonus events. It’s the company that introduced Reel Power, the 243-ways-to-win format based on buying reels instead paylines with your bets.

And Aristocrat launched a trend that became a casino standard when it introduced Hyperlink back in the 1990s through its Cash Express system. Hyperlink, with frequent hit, four-level progressive jackpots, is the father of all the multilevel progressives from multiple game makers you see in casinos today.

The Australian-based slot manufacturer is at it again with a triumvirate of creations that figure to make players, casino operators and competing game makers to stand up and take notice. The new Sons of Anarchy slot introduces Cluster Power, a new way to form reel combinations that will hold your attention until the last reel stops spinning.  The Romance of Fire and Rain uses some of the biggest Mega Symbols yet – up to three reels across and eight symbols down – to enable some huge, multiline wins. And Super Wheel Blast takes the ever-popular wheel spin and integrates into main game play, a new, different way to use a game mechanic that long has been used just for bonuses outside main game play. (more…)

Tips & Tricks of the Triple Crown

The Triple Crown is the most elusive prize in sports.

Baseball has its own Triple Crown. It happens when a player leads the league in three statistical categories and since baseball began in 1838, there have been 17 batters and 38 pitchers that have accomplished this amazing feat.

In terms of other horsepower, to win the Triple Crown of motorsport is to capture Formula 1’s most important races: the Indianapolis 500, the 24 Hours of Le Mans, and the Monaco Grand Prix. Only 17 drivers have won a single event while competing in all three, and just 1 – Graham Hill – has pulled off the near impossible.

This year will see horse racing celebrate the 141st running of the Kentucky Derby, the 140th Preakness Stakes, and 147th Belmont Stakes: and just 11 horses have captured all three. Unlike any other sport where an athlete can try for a Triple Crown over and over, a horse only has one chance to be three-years-old on the first Saturday in May. (more…)

Social Media: Win, One Tweet @ A Time

TwitterTwitter, the “microblogging site” that lets people communicate with others 140 characters at a time, is a way of life to some – and a complete mystery to others. Southern Gaming’s recent reader’s survey found that many of you consider yourself to be in the latter camp.

We totally understand that. On the surface, it just doesn’t make sense that people talking randomly in such short bursts could ever be more interesting than “Here’s what I had for lunch today.” But once you do a little digging, you’ll find that there’s some fascinating stuff being written and published, much of it treating the limit of the medium as a strength rather than a weakness.

So, if you’re ready to take the plunge, install the Twitter app on your smart phone—or simply go to twitter.com—and get ready to “follow” some folks based on your unique playing interests. To help you get started, we’ve put together a list of experts and personal favorites who should be a great start as you start exploring the online world of sports, gaming news and information. (more…)

10 Ways to Maximize Your Play

Maximize Slot PlayWhen we sit down to play a slot machine, our task is simple: Make a bet, spin the reels and the machine takes care of the rest. Except in rare instances, there are no strategies to learn or skills to master. The flip side is that while we can’t affect the outcome in any predictable way, nor tell from the outside which games are the highest-paying, there are things we do know about slots and the casinos that operate them to get the most out of a day on the machines. Here are 10 things every slot player should know.



The Ultimate Guide to Spring Festivals

Outdoor festivals are one of summer’s truest pleasures and the South hosts some of the finest festivals and cultural celebrations in the country. Whether you prefer a big gathering of thousands or an affair that’s family-friendly, the region offers opportunities aplenty. Need help choosing which one(s) to attend? The festivals and fairs highlighted below are worthy of checking out. This list caters to a wide range of tastes, so there should be something for everyone down south.


A Day In The Life Of…. A Casino Valet

55845_SOGD_Valet_Illust_optFor most casino-goers, the experience begins when they step out of their car and hand it over to the valet, and ends when the car is brought back hours or perhaps days later. For the valets, though, those bookends represent time at work rather than play. And depending on the time of day, the attitude of the patrons and the cleanliness of the cars, that work can be enjoyable – or it can be the pits.

Josh Kuykendall worked as a valet at the El Cortez in Las Vegas for 12 years. He says the shifts align pretty closely with other hourly jobs – there’s the coveted day shift, the not-so-desirable swing shift, and the graveyard hours, which work well for certain people but are anathema to others. He says he spent about half of his time on the day shift, and the other half on the graveyard. (more…)

Gaming Mogul Adelson Wants You to Play His Way

P16_shutterstock_19955_optThe Internet has revolutionized just about every aspect of modern life. So leavened throughout culture and commerce is the technology that it’s taken for granted that just about anything one can do in terms of transactions can be online. Banking, shopping, dating—the list is infinite. Well, almost infinite. Readers of this magazine are doubtless more aware than most that their particular pastime—gambling—is still unable to fully plug-in to the World Wide Web. And if another force well known to gamers—81-year-old casino pioneer Sheldon Adelson—has his $100 million way, the disconnect will endure. You’ll need to continue to play, roll your dice to your nearest casino and leave your iPad at home. (more…)

Casinos on Cruise Ships

P22_Carnival_Breeze_T_opt1The dice fly, the wheels spin and the chips stack up! Winning at sea isn’t about a Naval fleet; it’s about gaming on the waves, by they ripples or high rollers. Taking all the elements of Vegas from the desert and loading them onto a boat is what these liners have in mind. From poker to craps, slots to wheels, bingo to baccarat—there is truly something for everyone.

Perhaps there is maritime magic involved with luck on the way to a Caribbean destination or maybe the mythical Nemo himself has some pull in Central American waters, but there is no doubt that a sea cruise transports passengers in more ways than one. Take a chance, toss the dice and work on your best poker face while basking on the deck with a tropical drink.

The casinos are fully stocked and loaded, from the bars to the décor, games and grandeur. The essence of any cruise is the carefree spirit, pampering, indulgence and discovery. Whatever floats your boat is the unspoken rule of the waves.

A few suggestions for gaming as you sail are presented here for your perusal. Make sure you visit the websites to locate your departure ports and destinations, then draw your own comparisons and find the best fleet for a personal fit.

Bon voyage!


Have a Bucket List? Make sure these Southern Stops are on it.

Southern Gaming strives to provide our readers with the best in gaming and travel. The South is chalked full of so many amazing ‘to-do’s’, from festivals and attractions to historic landmarks and relaxing getaways, and we wanted to share a few of our favorites with you. So, as you begin planning your 2015 travel itinerary, consider mixing it up with a few of these Southern selections!


Southern Invasion: Good, Better, Besh!

IF YOU DON’T THINK THAT Southern food and dining culture claims a seat at the head of the American table, you haven’t been to the bookstore, watched television, or enjoyed a road trip below the Mason-Dixon line in quite some time.

The diverse foods and people of the changing American South have given the world both curiosity and inspiration in the form of authors, educators, journalists and musicians. But perhaps most commonly appreciated of all Southern ambassadors is the Southern chef.


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