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Ho-Chunk BRFalls visit

Discussion in 'Non-Vegas Trip Reports' started by jgates8, Jul 5, 2020.

  1. jgates8

    jgates8 VIP Whale

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    My Trip Report

    Not many (if any) of you frequent this casino but just general thoughts...didn’t think to take any photos but may add a few next week. I decided to wait until Wednesday.

    Ho-Chunk BRF opened last Monday. Approximately 350 machines available. Some popular ones were set in a circle type layout (lightning link etc) to keep as many open as possible. Others were in their normal banks of 4 or so- only the two end ones open and 2 in between were closed. Some banks of 6 were only 2 open also. A couple banks of 3 had the standard end garbage can moved between 2 of the machines so more spacing & both end machines open. No table games, bingo, food, bar or hotel yet. No food yet. Only one bank of soda machines open inside closed snack bar.

    Single entry under the canopy - nice if weather is not good. All non smoking. Outside smoking area under closed entrance. Temp taken at entry. Masks required. Drop mask & look up at camera before entering.

    Machines displayed message on slot card holder to push service button if you wanted your machine wiped down before playing (I had taken small travel packs of wipes - should have saved but just used my own). Chairs were still at all machines so if you came with a companion they could sit by you in contrast to the Joliet report I read. That still left at least one machine spacing to next playable machine.

    Only saw one or two not wearing masks in proper manner (under nose). Normally mask doesn’t bother me but a couple times it did annoy me. I think I breathe harder & faster when I’m playing.

    I played foolishly & spent well over what I should have. Were machines tight? I would say yes, however I often have cold streaks there-and normally am just smart enough to stop before I spend too much. Was just stupid in that respect this visit because it’s been so long. Prior to shut down I actually was winning each week & paid off my car. Guess they just wanted some of that back lol.

    I ran into a higher level employee yesterday in town whose first question was did I feel safe. Yes, I did. They are hoping to open bar very soon. Food service a bit more of a delay, part of which is due to issues with 3rd party company that they split with.

    Unfortunately they did just make some of their temporary layoffs permanent (prob because they were still providing insurance which is expensive). I was surprised at seeing some both long term & short term employees working. So not sure how they decided who stayed as some long term were not called back from complaints on their FB.

    I wouldn’t want to visit on a weekend when it might be harder to find a machine I wanted but it was fairly easy to access a machine on a weeknight. (Some of my faves were off). I’ll go back Wednesday but stay more in control of my play & bet lower.
     
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  2. tringlomane

    tringlomane STP Addicted Beer Snob

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    Thanks for the update! Hope you do better next time!
     
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  3. jgates8

    jgates8 VIP Whale

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    I forgot to take a pic while waking down the main path. This does show that it is still pretty quiet though on Wednesday nights. They opened an addl 80 machines on Friday. Not quite sure how they are going to do that & still maintain appropriate distancing. Unless they temporarily pull out the table games which aren’t open? C0956709-7B18-4FAB-A295-E72027DE98E5.jpeg 0CFDFBF0-C224-4066-A32B-B96BBE9226CE.jpeg
     
  4. mjames1229

    mjames1229 # of visits includes only trips w/ hotel stays

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    I was there for about an hour on July 1 at 8:00 AM (My son moved to Rice Lake that day, so I stopped for a potty break along the way).

    There were no more than a dozen players there at that time, but with all of the efforts made to get me in the building, it was about as safe as I could feel in a casino.
     
    Super Bowl / Poker Trip Combo Platter
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  5. jgates8

    jgates8 VIP Whale

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    Yes, that is the way I would put it also. I stopped on Monday to do my freeplay this week (loads every 8th day so they can skip a few weeks during the year). Unfortunately that is senior day - earn a certain number of points & receive $10 freeplay. That made it busier than Wed nites. I was still able to get on most machines that I wanted to play. Was foolish enough to not leave when I was up $100 but left with what I walked in there with cash wise.

    *High Limit room is totally closed
    *Most all table games have been pulled out to put in more machines. I would say about 30 went into that area. Not sure where the other 50 machines they opened up were - I didn't notice anything different in the gaming area.
    *Entering was interesting this time as last two times when I was only one there they waived me around the 'disney space mountain' rope line & had me come from the side directly to the stand. This gal was insistent that I walk around the entire roped walkway to get to the stand. No one else coming in at all at that time. I was polite & did not ask if she was on a power trip lol.
    *One of multiple slot attendants was working doing slot cleaning. (I still took my own wipes in a baggie - although more cleaners around so I probably would have had quick response if I used the call button). Had a long conversation with about the seriousness of it & how they were doing their best to keep things safe for their players. Indicated nearly all customers very respectful & keep their mask up over their nose. They mention to them if it goes below the nose & ask them to push it up. Attendants have requested from management to be allowed to ask people to leave if they continue to not follow directions, but not allowed to yet. (Said there are a few customers that just keep pulling it down over & over).
    *Remembered to take tip bills for the beverage station (in the empty snack bar). Was happy to see they allowed the young man working to read a book while he was in-between customers. Tips were not really filling up his container on Monday. Not sure if that was just timing or if the older clientele didn't want to tip for a soda (not being judgemental but I know some of the people that were there lol......).
    *Only one of the two players clubs is open (one closest to entry). Plexiglass in front of the worker & card scanner is now positioned on the outside of the counter so you are sliding your card vs. the employee handling your card. Only one employee there each of the 3 times I have stopped. Normally around 5-6 on duty between the two stations.
    *Only heard one customer ask where they could go to smoke - attendant directed them to the appropriate entry & they seemed to not be bothered at all by having to step outside to smoke. (Another huge social media complaint).
    *Used the kiosk to cash in voucher. Just one less person handling it then.

    The disposable masks I have are very handy, but they rub unmercifully behind my ears after a while. I need to try a different brand with a softer band or get some lighter weight cloth ones. (The cloth ones I have a flanel material & they are very hot). No breathing issues with it - just ear!
     
  6. jlpkap

    jlpkap Low-Roller

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    Surprised Madison opened first, them Black River Falls and last the kingpin Wisconsin Dells. Have they opened the hotels yet?
     
  7. mjames1229

    mjames1229 # of visits includes only trips w/ hotel stays

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    Ho Chunk Tomah was still closed as of last week (and even looking for that info puts me in the Degenerate Hall of Fame).
     
    Super Bowl / Poker Trip Combo Platter
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  8. jgates8

    jgates8 VIP Whale

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    BRF has not opened yet (don't believe Wittenberg hotel has either). When I checked the Dells page a week or so ago, the hotel was also not open there. Was thinking Nekoosa now had a hotel (??) not opened yet either. (Haven't been to Nekoosa in 4 years since my mom took me for my birthday in 2016 - can't believe it's been 4 years!).

    I consider that casino to be about the size of the 14 x 70 mobile home I grew up in. To me it isn't even conceivable it was handicapped accessible, but you must be able to squeeze a wheelchair through there or it wouldn't be legal. I think they only have around 100 machines don't they? The staff is mainly rotated BRF employees (maybe they come in from Dells & Nekoosa also?) - evidently they work a shift or two a week down there. If they operated at 20-30% capacity it would be a whole 35 machines or so. Definitely not worth doing payroll for (in my opinion) at this time.
     
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