Shawnee Tribe to Build Casino Entertainment Center near Guymon

KSCB News - February 18, 2015 6:22 pm

Shawnee tribal leaders announced plans today to build a high-quality casino entertainment center on 107 acres southwest of Guymon, Okla., in Texas County. Named the Golden Mesa Casino to honor the natural beauty of the region, the casino entertainment center will be the first of its kind built in the Oklahoma Panhandle.

The casino will be located approximately 2 ½ miles southwest of Guymon on the south side of State Highway 54 and will become a destination location and economic engine for the area, according to an economic feasibility study. The project will feature approximately 600 electronic games and eight black jack tables as well as a restaurant and bar. Architects have designed the casino entertainment center to accommodate future expansion.

“We are pleased to announce our plans today to develop a casino entertainment center just outside Guymon, Okla.,” said Ron Sparkman, chief of the Shawnee Tribe. “Today’s announcement comes after two years of thorough research that confirmed the viability of building a 60,000-square-foot, high-quality center in the heart of the Oklahoma Panhandle. The new center will position Guymon and the entire Oklahoma Panhandle as an entertainment and tourist destination point, attracting visitors from Texas, Kansas, New Mexico and Colorado. In addition to the inflow of money to the area from out-of-state visitors, the center is projected to create 175 new jobs with a total annual payroll of $3.7 million, which will boost the local economy and benefit existing retail, hospitality and restaurant businesses.”

Chief Sparkman indicated he expects construction will begin in late 2016. He said the tribe is currently taking all required steps to complete the planning process associated with developing a casino entertainment center.

“We’ve known for a long time casino entertainment centers in Oklahoma drive tourism dollars to the state, which, in turn, support local businesses, benefit communities and support a range of government services,” reported Russell Evans, senior economist at the Oklahoma City University Steven C. Agee Economic Research and Policy Institute. “The intangible benefits of a casino entertainment center in the Oklahoma Panhandle will be higher than in other areas because it will contribute substantially to creating a robust hospitality and tourism industry in this part of the state. It will be a real win-win for the area.”

“Diversifying the economy in the Panhandle of Oklahoma is one of the top priorities of our organization. Today’s announcement about plans to build a casino entertainment center near Guymon by the Shawnee Tribe and its partner, Global Gaming Solutions, one of the most successful companies in the entertainment industry, represents a major step toward achieving our goal of greater economic diversification,” said Vicki-Ayres Portman, executive director of the Panhandle Regional Economic Development Coalition. “The new casino entertainment center will bring quality new jobs and substantial economic benefits to the entire Panhandle region. We look forward to working with Chief Sparkman and his leadership team to bring this development to fruition.”

Chief Sparkman continued, “As a business enterprise, we recognize the importance of being a good local citizen. As such, we believe in doing our part to build a better and stronger Panhandle region by working with area communities and organizations to support programs aimed at improving the quality of life for all citizens. We look forward to joining the local business community and working together for the greater good of the region.”

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