Fort McMurray’s entire population of approximately 80,000 people has been told to evacuate due to a huge wildfire that is threatening residential communities to the east. The Company said as a precaution, and to support its employees whose homes are now under mandatory evacuation notices, its Boomtown Casino is being closed temporarily until further notice.
Established under the laws of the Province of Alberta, Gamehost’s operations are all located there, and in addition to the Boomtown Casino in Ft. McMurray, include Service Plus Inns & Suites hotel, the Great Northern Casino, as well as a strip mall all located in Grande Prairie. The Company also has a 91 percent controlling interest in the operator of the Deerfoot Inn & Casino in S.E. Calgary, Deerfoot Inn & Casino Inc.
Fort McMurray describes itself as the “gateway to the north” on its tourism website and only Saudi Arabia and Venezuela have larger oil reserves than the oil sands region. According to BBC News, among the buildings being destroyed in the city are homes, a hotel, and petrol stations. Roads were gridlocked and many fled to the north after flames forced the main road south to close. It was called the “biggest evacuation… in the history of the province,” by Alberta Premier Rachel Notley.