“The first year was a very big success,” said Bill Keena, the casino’s general manager. “The number of patrons coming here has exceeded what we thought we were going to do.”

In contrast to Rivers Casino, Hollywood Casino in Aurora grossed nearly $160 million in its last full year of operation and the Grand Victoria Casino brought in $227 million.

While Rivers was supposed to be the last of the Illinois casinos to open, state lawmakers have approved legislation to create new casinos and also add slots at racetracks. Governor Pat Quinn has said he won’t sign the package into law.

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