Happy Memorial Day

Dayton Cemetery —– Founded in 1851. This is one of the oldest constantly maintained cemeteries in the state of Nevada.

Memorial Day weekend is just about to begin; traditionally Memorial Day kicks off the summer season.  It has been the most important holiday for my family for nearly 150 years; in mass we traipse off to Dayton, Nevada to decorate the graves, celebrate our heritage and reinforce our relationships. Every child in our family remembers being in the cemetery, if not the first time, at least when they were very small.  I can remember collecting rocks when I was 4 or 5; I have a niece who can remember eating cake and celebrating her third birthday. The grave marker in the picture above I carved for my sister for her 15th birthday; that grave is simply called “My Baby” and has been tended by one of the female members of the family for the last 120 years. Memorial Day and the Dayton cemetery are the beginning and ending points of life for us.

But for most people this is a weekend to travel and relax; for the gaming industry it is one of the best weekends of the year.  Casinos in New Jersey are hoping the sunshine, beach and casinos will bring big crowds and start a summer seasons that is better than the last three have been.  Memorial Day is also an important day for casino beginnings; if someone is planning to open a new casino, being open for Memorial Day is really important; that way the casino catches the momentum of the holiday and hope it carries  through until the fall.

The Encore Beach Club,  features a beach club and nightclub.

To celebrate the holiday weekend Harrah’s will begin dealing cards at the Rio for the World Series of Poker, Steve Wynn is opening a 70 million dollar swimming pool and night club, the Cherokee Indian Tribe of Oklahoma is opening its 8th casino with 200 slot machines in Oklahoma and the Oneida Nation of New York’s casino, Turning Stone will be serving alcohol for the first time.

Before they left for the holidays lawmakers in several passed some casino related bills; in Ohio two separate bills intended to regulate casinos passed, one in each house; in Illinois a bill authorizing slot machines at truck stops passed; Rhode Island lawmakers approved a subsidy for Twin Rivers slot parlor; and Kentucky passed a budget without any new gaming.  And to catch the last minute opportunity for media attention, a number of new gaming bills were introduced. In New Jersey sports betting was reintroduced, this time using the Super Bowl in the Meadow Lands as a reason; in North Carolina a new bill was introduced to allow the lottery to operate video lottery terminals; and in Pennsylvania a law was proposed that would move the license originally granted to Foxwoods for Philadelphia to another location in the north of the state. Indeed a busy week for people getting ready to go on vacation. I spent the week buying flowers for graves and preparing for my sister and niece’s visit.

However you celebrate it, I wish you a happy Memorial Day.


1 Response to “Happy Memorial Day”

  1. 1 Sandra Bledsoe May 30, 2010 at 12:08 pm

    Ken… What a great article… Thank you for sharing your families time honored, memorial day tradition. It’s good amidst all the retailers sales, barbeques and “special” events, to be reminded of the definition of memorial…. Video lottery terminals…… how exciting for North Carolina……

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