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Saganing Eagles Landing Good For Business In Standish And Pinconning

Casino Brings Long-Sought Prosperity For Surrounding Communities

May 18, 2008       Leave a Comment
By: MyBayCity Staff

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Saganing Eagles Landing Casino In Standish is "growing the business community it surrounds"

Most businesses are struggling with the current economic situation, however, one business showing no sign of struggles is the new Saganing Eagles Landing Casino.

The Arenac County Casino posted $17 million in profits and that's just for the first 90 days it's been open.

This is the casino's "net win," defined as the difference between what goes in the top of the slot machine and what comes out the bottom in players' winnings. Think of it as gross revenue.

The cost of operating the casino - wages, utilities, construction costs, repairs, etc., also come from this revenue stream. Profit is what's left over after all those are paid, and the Tribe's actual profit is a closely guarded secret.

Still, this revenue stream, given the small size of the Saganing Eagles Landing, is pretty darn good for business in surrounding communities that see not only a jump in clientèle passing through their "neck of the woods" but a monetary benefit from the Casino as well.

The casino has greatly increased traffic flow on highway M-13 and along once quiet Worth Road, where the Arenac County Road Commission spent extra time plowing and salting this winter.

The reservation in southeast Arenac County is in a rural area with one of the state's highest unemployment rates at 11.5 percent.

About 50 members of the Saginaw Chippewa tribe, and their families, live on or near the Saganing Reservation land. The tribe has 3,200 members and is based in Isabella County.

This week the Chippewa's Saganing reservation plans to award some $350,000 to local governments and schools at 10 a.m. May 21 at its Standish tribal center.

The amount is a state distribution requirement reflecting 2 percent of its $17 million net slot machine profits from January through March of this year.

Such success is no doubt driving the pace of local expansion - and diversification. Businesses feeling the "adrenaline rush" from additional profits range from Kawkawlin through Pinconning and Standish.

The success has the tribe itself readying a hotel, a restaurant/travel plaza and a sporting goods store with a specialty mall. The projects are located within a few miles of the casino.

On Memorial Day weekend, the Chippewa tribe plans to open the nearby Eagle Bay Marina. This property has been remodeled, doubled in size, and newly dredged, developers say.

Adjacent to the casino, builders are finishing the Saganing Tribal Center's powwow grounds with pavilion and camp sites. The arena opens the end of June hosting a powwow celebration.

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