Ohio Road Trip Part 1 -- Chicago to Cleveland

Discussion in 'Craps Stories & Trip Reports' started by random_roller, Nov 8, 2016.

  1. random_roller, Nov 8, 2016

    random_roller

    random_roller Member

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    My wife and I took a quick trip last week to Ohio to meet several friends and watch the Ohio State - Nebraska game. We took an indirect route from Chicago to Columbus in order to stop off in Toledo and Cleveland before finally heading down I-71 on Saturday.

    We departed Chicago late Thursday night (actually early Friday morning) and drove to South Bend, Indiana. Had to get out of Chicagoland before the parade celebrating Clinton's, er, the Cubs victory completely wreaked havoc with traffic patterns in the city. Good thing, too, because there was also quite a bit of construction on the Indiana Toll Road and with 1 open lane in several stretches, normal workday traffic would have been a nightmare.

    After spending the night at a hotel in South Bend, we continued on I-80/90 until we reached Toledo, Ohio. Our first detour was a short drive on I-75 north to Hollywood Casino Toledo. The last time we stopped by was probably 2014 or so, and before that shortly after the casino opened in 2012. On our previous visits, I hadn't spent much time in the casino because we were traveling with our dog and usually on a tight schedule for holiday travel. Based upon this visit, I have to say this location is probably my favorite Hollywood Casino even though there isn't much to do in the immediate area. The facility is non-smoking, which is a big plus from my perspective. Plenty of parking in the garage, which has a decent layout. The casino floor has spacious isles to walk and very good space for gaming. I'm used to cramped, crowded floor space of Chicagoland casinos, so this was a very nice change. Several of the restaurants (Final Cut, Epic Buffet, Take 2 Grill) are the same across other Hollywood Casinos. Finally, self-serve beverages (Coke products, coffee/tea) are available -- no tipping or waiting (unless you opt to order from a beverage server). I played craps for about 90 minutes while my wife relaxed at a table in the nearby H Lounge (closed at the time) and surfed the internet on her phone. The crew was friendly and competent.

    After departing Hollywood Casino Toledo, we continued east on I-80/90 (Ohio Turnpike) until nearing Cleveland. From there, it was local roads in order to stop by a Donatos Pizza location in Lakewood. Great thin crust pizza -- probably my all-time favorite. And I'm not just saying this because I was a classmate of the current CEO. After eating way too much Donatos pizza, we proceeded to the Holiday Inn Express in downtown Cleveland. The hotel is in the historic National City Bank Building at Euclid Avenue & East 6th Street, about 6 blocks from Public Square/Tower City (where Jack Casino is located). It's an easy walk or short bus ride (RTA's HealthLine) between the hotel and casino. There are hotels located closer to the casino, but you might have to pay more. We parked our car at the nearby 515 Euclid parking garage @$24 (special event pricing). After checking into the hotel, we walked over to Jack Casino and walked around for a while. All six craps tables on the main floor were open. The craps table in the High Limit room ($50 minimum, semi-private game) was also in use. No gaming for me, though, as I was tired.

    I woke up somewhat early, grabbed a quick breakfast at the hotel, and then walked over to Jack Casino. Last time I was there, it was still Horseshoe Cleveland. Rock Gaming acquired Caesars Entertainment's interest in February 2015 and changed the name in May 2016. When I arrived @8:30 am Saturday morning, there were 2 open tables. I played craps for about 80 minutes on the crapless craps table, as the regular craps table was full. About an hour after I had started playing, a 3rd craps table was opened and it quickly filled up. The crew was decent and competent.

    After a morning session at Jack Casino, it was time to start heading to Columbus. But first, we had to stop off at Progressive Field and take a few pictures. Chris Antonetti (Cleveland Indians VP) wasn't available, so I have to wait to see if the Indians are interested in an over-the-hill spot starter/reliever with a 75 mph fast ball and a non-existent / hanging curveball. We took many pictures of Progressive Field and Quicken Loans Arena and also bought a few Indians shirts Finally, it was time to leave for Columbus.

    To be continued...
     
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  2. TDVegas, Nov 8, 2016

    TDVegas

    TDVegas Member

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    Wonderful. I'm surprised there are no smoking casinos with the implosion of the Revel AC idea. Welcome.

    I'm also surprised how many times I hear a craps table is full on casinos outside of Vegas. Generally speaking--- I can play Red Rock 24/7 and never have a time I can't get on the table. In fact more often than not--pretty empty. $5 too.

    I guess when it's the only game for what might be hundreds of miles...as a casino, you can do as you please with minimums because you'll get a crowd.
     
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  3. random_roller, Nov 8, 2016

    random_roller

    random_roller Member

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    It's good to be the owner of a quasi-monopoly (based upon geography).

    For traditional craps, Ohio has casinos in Cleveland, Columbus, Cincinnati, and Toledo. The closest casino to Cleveland that offers traditional craps is probably Presque Isle Downs in Erie, PA, @100 miles. That's a pretty good distance to drive when there is a local option. Jack Cleveland Casino is also very well located from a public transportation perspective and it also benefits from people who have attended games at nearby Quicken Loans Arena (Cavs) and Progressive Field (Indians). Much better location than Hollywood Toledo or Columbus, or Jack Cincinnati Casino.
     
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  4. Liman

    Liman Member

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    theres plenty of craps tables available now in the northeast, and on any given weekend evening, most places are packed, 4-7 tables, always packed.
    Caesars atlantic city runs a ton of tables on busy nights, easy enough to play, but on weekends, not as easy to find a 10 dollar spot open.
     
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  5. Edward-ky, Dec 6, 2016

    Edward-ky

    Edward-ky Member

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    I stopped at the Hollywood in Columbus a few months back. Didn't play craps there that time.
     
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