Omaha Tribe readies new Onawa casino - Omaha.com
Published Saturday, February 8, 2014 at 5:00 am / Updated at 2:41 pm
Money Talks
Omaha Tribe readies new Onawa casino


In the Money Talks blog, The World-Herald shares the latest in Nebraska business and development, with behind-the-scenes notes from our Money team. Read more and join the conversation.

Table games, a restaurant and bar and a gift shop are all coming back to the Blackbird Bend casino, formerly CasinOmaha, which will reopen in a brand new building on Wednesday.

The Omaha Tribe-owned casino, located in Onawa between Omaha and Sioux City, was shut down by Missouri River flooding in June 2011. It reopened in a portion of the old building about a year ago while the new facility was under construction, said marketing director Mike Krysl.

“It’s much like a phoenix rising out of the ashes,” Krysl said. “We like to think of this as a situation where a blackbird is rising out of the flood waters.”

The new facility is next door to the old building, Krysl said, a portion of which will open in March as a bingo hall.

The new building will sit 6 feet higher than the old casino, Krysl said, to prevent future flooding. “Hopefully we’ll never see flooding of that magnitude again,” he said. “Just in case, I think there’s some satisfaction in knowing that extra precaution has been taken.”

About 140 people have been hired to staff the facility. It will include a restaurant, the Upstream Cafe, which will have a la carte and buffet items, a bar and a gift shop and will also be used for promotions and live entertainment events. Those were features missed by residents in the area, who weren’t necessarily interested in gambling but missed having a restaurant. The temporary casino had a snack bar and slot machines.

A grand opening ceremony will be held Feb. 21. Leaders from the Omaha Tribal Council will perform a cedar ceremony, a ritual intended to bless the new building.

Contact the writer: Paige Yowell

paige.yowell@owh.com    |   402-444-1414    |  

Paige covers commercial development news primarily for the Money section's news blog, Money Talks.

UNL report casts doubt on use of corn-crop leftovers for ethanol
Thriving Nebraska technology company says it's 'the nature of our society' to automate jobs
Why two hotshots ditched six-figure salaries for a life of less
Warren Watch: Howard Buffett's foundation gives $1 million for award honoring spirited journalist
Rocket Man: The otherworldly ambitions of engineer, entrepreneur and philanthropist Elon Musk
Your Office Coach: Stop picking up the slack for the slacker on your team
Technology review: Fire TV needs work to reach potential
Chobani to expand beyond Greek yogurt
For junior bankers, a day off doesn’t shrink workload
Cab ride to airport (or anywhere in Omaha) could soon cost more
Vets can compete for start-up cash
Coming to Omaha: fun-focused sports league where every kids gets a trophy, parents promise to keep cool
Beals: Boy offers lessons of service, simplicity
Recalled frozen pasta product has tie to Omaha
Business digest: Lululemon shareholder suit dismissed
Suit challenges a Hollywood pillar: unpaid internships
Nonparents’ resentment grows over impact of companies’ family-friendly focus
Jeff Raikes’ next goal: making philanthropy effective
Restaurants invite customers to dine with their dogs
March unemployment rates up slightly in Nebraska, Iowa
Iowa officials announce plan for Microsoft data center
Lincoln pharmaceutical company wins funding, grant
Fortress Wealth joins Securities America network
USDA orders farms to report pig virus infections
Airbnb event seeks Omaha-area hosts for Berkshire weekend, CWS
Deadline Deal thumbnail
The Jaipur in Rockbrook Village
Half Off Fine Indian Cuisine & Drinks! $15 for Dinner, or $7 for Lunch
Buy Now
< >
SPOTLIGHT »
Inside Business
To submit an announcement for "Inside Business", click here. For questions call (402) 444-1371 or e-mail announcements@owh.com.
WORLD-HERALD ALERTS »
Want to get World-Herald stories sent directly to your home or work computer? Sign up for Omaha.com's News Alerts and you will receive e-mails with the day's top stories.
Can't find what you need? Click here for site map »