The Gambling options available to North Dakota residents include 6 tribal casinos, a state lottery, pari-mutuel betting, and lots of charitable gaming. Casinos have been legal since the early ’90s, and besides the major establishments, there are smaller facilities that feature slots, table games bingo, and poker.
Charitable gaming is taken very seriously in North Dakota. It has been legal for over 40 years, and more than 800 licensed charitable casinos are available to players. A five-member commission from the attorney general’s office regulates its activities. As for the games, bingo, raffles, pull-tabs, sports pools, blackjack, and poker are permitted. You can also find Calcutta pools and paddlewheels at some locations. Slots are exempted because the law does not allow video gaming machines that are based on chance at these venues. Having such a significant presence, charitable gaming nets millions of dollars in revenue yearly. The proceeds are used for educational, religious, and other charitable purposes.
The state lottery, unlike most other states, got its approval much later in 2004. There are no in-state lottery draws, but it offers 5 multi-state games – Mega Millions, Powerball, Wild Card 2, Hot Lotto, and 2by. Online casinos have not yet crossed the legal threshold. Although there has been a lot of debate on the matter, no progress is being made. Owing to its proximity to Nevada, North Dakota casinos face stiff competition. Residents seem to be taking advantage of the online casinos in Nevada. They can bet legally within the territory of Nevada or even in a layover at the airport.
On a broader spectrum, online gambling is partially accepted. This is because while virtual casinos are illegal, off-track betting and online lottery ticket sales aren’t. Online poker had a brief triumph when a bill was introduced to address regulated online poker in 2005. Unfortunately, it did not pass and was eventually voted down.
Find North Dakota Casinos on The Map
Interesting State Facts
The name Dakota was taken from the Dakota Indian tribe. Norwegian immigrants owned a large portion of the land in the 19th century, and the state celebrates its Nordic heritage every year in a festival called “Norsk Høstfest” in the town of Minot.
Grand Forks, Bismarck, and Fargo are among the four coldest cities in the US, while the town of Rugby, from a geographical point of view, is the center of North America. To mark the location is a 15 feet tall rock obelisk flanked on both sides by the US and Canadian flags.
There is hardly any tourist destination in North Dakota, and the state is almost 90% farmland and ranches. Surprisingly, it also has the highest population increase in the country, 13.3% between 2011 and 2019.
North Dakota Gambling Venues
Tribal casinos are the only source of real money slots gaming. The Dakota Magic Casino has over 900 slot machines, and the 4 Bears Casino & Lodge holds 700. The latter has a free Players Club, where points earned during gameplay can be redeemed for food, lodge, and other benefits.
Table game options at the Indian casinos are also the most varied. You get choices like Spanish 21, Caribbean Stud poker, Ultimate Texas Hold’em, Keno, and Big-6 wheel in addition to the standard blackjack, craps, roulette, and poker. Social gaming has been given the green light from the get-go. Zynga, Activision Blizzard, and Supercell are three of the most popular social casino companies.
Racetracks offering pari-mutuel gambling sprung up around the same time that tribal casinos did. Nowadays, Chippewa Downs and North Dakota Horse Park are the only two facilities still in operation.