Holiday Surprise: Kewadin Casinos Adds Sports Betting At Five U.P. Locations

Written By Matt Schoch on December 14, 2020Last Updated on April 26, 2022
Kewadin Casinos

Sports betting is coming to Christmas just in time for Christmas.

A chain of five casinos in the Upper Peninsula added sports betting to the gambling menu on Monday.

Kewadin Casinos, through their partnership with WynnBET, unveiled sports betting kiosks at their locations in Christmas, Hessel, Manistique, Sault Ste. Marie, and St. Ignace.

“Betting will pick up people as they learn a little more,” said Shawn Carlson, vice president of marketing for Kewadin Casinos. “I think there’s going to be a learning curve for the newbies.”

Kewadin Casinos offer kiosk betting terminals

According to the Kewadin website, the terminals are branded as Kewadin Casinos Sportsbooks, a proud partner of WynnBET. Wynn is a huge name in the gaming industry and on the Las Vegas Strip and is growing its online gambling footprint as the market evolves.

The Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians, who operate the casinos, announced in March that GAN would serve as its software partner for online gambling and sports betting.

“GAN is the backbone provider of some of the biggest sportsbook engines in the world,” Carlson said. “And then having Wynn, which is obviously a powerhouse in its own right as another partner … we’re happy with our partners and our relationships.”

There are now 19 casinos with sports betting throughout the state. The first sports bets were taken on March 11 of this year at MGM Grand Detroit and Greektown Casino in downtown Detroit.

Kewadin’s terminals mean six casinos in the U.P. have sports betting, joining Island Resort Casino in Harris, which is partnered with BetAmerica.

What sports can you wager on at Kewadin Casinos?

According to the Kewadin website, the wagering menu at Kewadin will including auto racing, baseball, basketball, boxing/MMA, football, golf, hockey, and soccer.

The locations for the terminals are as follows:

  • In Christmas, there is one sports betting kiosk at Frosty’s Pub ‘n’ Grub.
  • At the Hessel location, the one kiosk is in the bar area.
  • The Manistique location has one sports betting terminal at Team Spirit Bar.
  • In Sault Ste. Marie, the three kiosks are in the Rapids Lounge and Superior Bar.
  • At St. Ignace, there are two sports betting kiosks at the Whitetail Sports Bar.

For now, it’s only kiosks betting at Kewadin Casinos. But Carlson said educating customers about sports betting will be a key to growth. The bars will be staffed with employees who are available to assist with sports betting questions.

Carlson also hopes, down the road, local players can one day bet on the International 500 Snowmobile Race in Sault Ste. Marie, a popular annual U.P. winter festival.

“That ultimately would be something we would love to do,” Carlson said.

Online gambling is expected to launch in mid-January, according to the Michigan Gaming Control Board. Follow our live updates for the latest.

WSI US, LLC, doing business as Wynn, was among the 15 operators issued a provisional license by the MGCB last week.

Carlson said he expects WynnBET to be among the early entrants into the market next year.

“We’ll be ready to go once we get the green light.”

What else do Kewadin Casinos visitors need to know?

According to the website, wagers can only be placed with cash or winning sports bets wagers.

The sportsbook kiosks have a single-game bet maximum payout of $5,000. This increases to $10,000 for the NFL playoffs and Super Bowl and also for multi-leg parlays.

You must be 19 or older to visit Kewadin Casinos.

The Canadian border is currently not open because of COVID-19, cutting off a crucial portion of the Kewadin customer base in the flagship Sault Ste. Marie location.

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Matt Schoch

A Michigan native, Matt has worked at newspapers in Michigan, Missouri and the Virgin Islands. A versatile sports reporter, Matt has covered sailing on the Great Lakes, cricket in the Caribbean, high school and pro playoffs, and the Olympics in Rio. He’s also the former host of the Locked On Pistons Podcast and producer of a documentary on Emoni Bates. A former blackjack dealer, Matt has studied the industry from all sides.

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