Smart Talk March 23 

Ka-ching! Preparing for new gambling
The state Racing Commission is reviewing proposed rules to regulate new forms of machine gambling at the Oaklawn and Southland race tracks. A public hearing on the rules, which don’t yet specify the types of games that will be played, could be held in the next couple of months.

State officials predict that the rules could be adopted and the way cleared for additional machine gambling at the tracks as soon as the end of summer or early fall. They predict that the new gambling will begin even if lawsuits are still pending by opponents of the gambling. The suits challenge the local option election procedures that ratified the legislative-approved gambling, most likely to be video poker.

As it stands, the gambling action won’t be Las Vegas- or Atlantic City-style in at least one respect. According to the rules draft, gambling on the machines will be allowed from 10 a.m. to 2 a.m. daily, except Easter and Christmas. Gambling Laboratories International, a consultant that drew up the draft rules, notes, however, that “restriction on gaming hours will have a limiting effect on gaming revenues. … 24-hour gaming will maximize revenue providing the greatest benefit to the licensee.” So there’s a chance before rules are finalized that the tracks might seek 24-hour play. They tend to get what they want in Arkansas.

The new machines will be considered games of skill, but skill has its limits. They’ll be set to pay off at a pre-determined rate, with a minimum 83 percent return. State officials predict the return will be in the 90 percent range, as it is at many casinos. The rate will be monitored by the Racing Commission.

King of Bucks, meet Prince of Peace
The Arkansas Baptist News reports that the Baptist Men’s Ministry of Second Baptist Church of Conway held its fifth and most successful “Beast Feast” Jan. 27, “drawing 2,100 men and boys and resulting in 272 decisions to follow Christ.”

ABN explains that the Beast Feast is an annual sportsmen’s banquet open to men and boys of all ages. “This year’s keynote speaker was John Morgan, pastor of Sagemont Baptist Church of Houston, Texas, and an avid sportsman and big game hunter who has bagged over 75 species of game.

“This year’s event also included the Bass Pro Shops ‘King of Bucks’ Exhibit of over 200 of the largest whitetail bucks ever mounted.”

Keeping kosher
Though a short-lived effort at one Little Rock restaurant didn’t work out, you can now eat kosher again in Little Rock — at least on special occasions. The Peabody Hotel has established a kosher section in its kitchen facilities and will provide food for catered events that is prepared according to Jewish law. The kitchen is under the supervision of Rabbi Martin J. Applebaum of the Orthodox Congregation Agudath Achim, who came to Little Rock from Florida in September.

Rabbi Applebaum notes that the addition of the kosher service at the Peabody does not extend to regular meal service in the hotel restaurants, which are served by separate parts of the hotel kitchens. But he said kosher meals can be provided by room service to hotel guests.

The Peabody says it is the first, and only, hotel in Arkansas to provide kosher food service.



Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

  • Federal investigation uncovers foster parent's abuse of at least five children

    U.S. Attorney Kenneth Elser announced today Clarence Garretson, 65, of Van Burean had pleaded guilty in federal court today to five counts of interstate transportation of a child with intention engage in criminal activity.
    • Oct 25, 2016
  • Identity released in Little Rock police shooting

    Roy Lee Richards, 46, who lived in apartments on Green Mountain Drive, has been identified by police as the man fatally shot about 12:37 a.m. this morning by officers responding to a disturbance call about a man with a long gun in the 500 block of East 8th Street.
    • Oct 25, 2016
  • Zoo announces death of 22-year-old lion

    The Little Rock Zoo announced today the death of Sidney, a 22-year-old female lion. The lion was euthanized after a corneal graft on her eye deteriorated.
    • Oct 25, 2016
  • More »

More by Arkansas Times Staff

Most Shared

Latest in Smart Talk

  • Better than Texas

    Arkansas's tax system is slightly more friendly to the poorest people, but only slightly.
    • Aug 24, 2011
  • Small-school champions

    Two Arkansas congressmen are among the 14 sponsors of a bill that would "correct" a provision of the federal school-funding formula they say favors large school districts over small districts.
    • Aug 24, 2011
  • Bipartisan race

    The rise of Republicanism in Arkansas has brought a rare two-party race to the state Senate in Southeast Arkansas, traditionally a Democratic stronghold.
    • Aug 24, 2011
  • More »

Visit Arkansas

Searching for diamonds at Crater of Diamonds State Park

Searching for diamonds at Crater of Diamonds State Park

A venture to this state park is on the must-do list for many, the park being the only spot in North America where you can dig for diamonds and other gemstones and keep your finds.

Event Calendar

« »


2 3 4 5 6 7 8
9 10 11 12 13 14 15
16 17 18 19 20 21 22
23 24 25 26 27 28 29
30 31  

Most Recent Comments

  • Re: Road Trip Arkansas

    • Hunter . I see what you mean... Charles `s comment is unimaginable... I just got…

    • on October 25, 2016
  • Re: The Arkansas ale trail

    • just before I saw the draft that said $7003 , I didn't believe that...my... friend…

    • on October 25, 2016
  • Re: Youth movement

    • Best of luck. Will look forward to watching the results with high hopes for him.

    • on October 24, 2016

© 2016 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation