June From the desk of Jen Evenson, Gambling Manager

Supporting our Community and our Members

Jul 18

Happy June Members – I’m sure a lot of you have heard and seen many things regarding the electronic pull tabs at the state level during their last session.  This is something I’ve been following, and right now, even they don’t necessarily understand the language it seems.  Yes, there are some changes coming, what I’m hearing from distributors and even from legislators is NO e-tabs are not going away completely.

There will be some changes for any new games that are approved after this August, however, most changes our players will not see until next year.  Some actually are good changes for our organization as a whole.  A small tax break is coming, a cap on what manufacturers can charge us, a clarification on how to calculate if we need a third-party audit (which can range from a cost to our charity of up to $8,000). All some good changes.

The interpretation of the law means different things to different people, the bonus games are not going away, they may change, a player may not see spinning reels in a bonus game that mimic a slot machine, a feature that means a player maybe cannot earn additional free spins once in the bonus.  These are all interpretations that are being and will continue to be made and clarified with the Gambling Control Board, the manufacturers, the distributors and the law makers. Perhaps by next session we’ll get an extension if the changes prove difficult for the program designers.  One thing I do know for sure and for certain, is we will see some changes, right now, we are unsure how those will affect us. So at this point, at least for the next year – we’ll continue to operate as usual so we can give as much back to our surrounding communities as possible.

May was a notable month for sure.  We opened a new site on May 1st.  Mike’s Pub in Hibbing decided to contract with us to provide their charitable gaming.  They offer paper pull tabs, electronic pull tabs, linked bingo, meat raffles every Tuesday and they’ve added bingo to their calendar as well.  It’s a great place with a gorgeous outside seating area with bean bags set up to play and the food is fabulous – check it out next time you’re in Hibbing. 

In May we also had a LOT of winners in all of our games at ALL of our places – everyone sure loves when they win and last month was a month of winning!!

In May we decided to not award any donations mostly because of all of our wins, our large taxes that were due and also because we have a few large events coming up in the next weeks and months. We also did not have many requests.  We are also currently at 4-star rating with over 42% of our revenue having already been donated for the fiscal year. It’s quite the balancing act that’s for sure.

Coming up next on June 6th, please join us for our Public Safety Appreciation Night – we will have police cars, fire trucks, ambulances and even the DNR boat on the street in front of the lodge – we will also be giving away free life jackets and free bike helmets to all youth while supplies last.  In our lodge room, come to meet and greet all of our public safety personnel and get some free goodies to help the kids be safe this summer.  It’s also burger night that night from 5-7 so you won’t even have to cook!

In July – Jim’s Sports Club in Chisholm is holding a cash raffle with the proceeds to go towards their splash pad changing rooms.

In September – we’re raffling off a brand-new Polaris side-by-side with proceeds to go towards Eveleth’s new pocket park. Tickets are available at the lodge, from members and at your local establishments!

Enjoy your summer, be safe and remember – there’s always something fun happening at the Lodge.