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North Dayton Racino Says It Will Encourage “Responsible Gaming”

Gary DeWitt, the general manager of the new Hollywood Gaming racino in north Dayton, points out features of the main gaming room.
Lewis Wallace

The Hollywood Gaming racino in north Dayton is getting closer to its opening day. Parent company Penn National spent around $6 million on cleanup of the old Delphi plant site, and now a new building, a racetrack, and almost 2000 parking spots are going in at the corner of Needmore and Wagner Ford roads.

Racinos—race tracks that offer gambling on horse races as well as video lottery terminals regulated by the Ohio Lottery—are fairly new in Ohio and have raised concerns about market saturation, and about gambling addiction. Gary DeWitt, who’s the new racino’s general manager, says the company will work with the state to train employees on what they call “responsible gaming.”

“We want individuals that come in and utilize us as an entertainment option,” he says. “We don’t want customers coming in and not having a budget and going beyond that budget.”

The main gaming room in the new racino will include a bar, food court, and 1,000 video lottery machines‚ which operate like slot machines. The building will also include a full-service restaurant with a second bar, and indoor and outdoor seating for harness racing to take place on an outdoor track.

The race track at the north Dayton racino under construction in 2014. Racino owner Penn National can't agree with the state of Ohio on a relocation payment to the city of Dayton.
Credit Lewis Wallace / WYSO
The race track at the north Dayton racino will have a pond in the middle and both indoor and outdoor seating.

 The racino expects to employ 500 people in a mix of full and part-time jobs, but could not provide estimates of wages or how many of the jobs will be full time. Previously, the company had estimated 1,000 jobs associated with the site.

The opening date isn’t set yet, but races are expected to begin in October.


The racino will be competing with another new racino in the area, theMiami Valley Gaming facility in Warren County.


Lewis Wallace is WYSO's economics reporter and substitute morning host. Follow him @lewispants.  

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