In mid-September 2014, Hollywood Gaming at Mahoning Valley Race Course opened to the public giving Ohio gamblers and visitors their seventh racino. This expensive project took just over a year to build and has had a tremendously successful first few months with $79.9 million staked by players in October, the first full month of operation. The horses finally debuted today with a first post time of 12:45pm. 8 races are on the schedule with 81 horses expected to run before the day is out.
About Mahoning Valley Race Course
Hollywood Gaming at Mahoning Valley Race Course construction began at the end of May 2013. In its pre-construction phase, a one-mile dirt course, complete with a grandstand and an attached casino with 850 video lottery machines was envisioned. Upon completion and the grand opening of the casino on September 17, 2014, all of these features were in place.
The Mahoning Valley Race Course was designed from the start as the successor to the Beulah Park Racetrack, in Columbus, even though it is on the other side of the state. The Ohio State Racing Commission had to approve the racetrack and casino (known together as a racino) before any betting could take place. This occurred without a hitch. The property is owned by Gaming and Leisure Properties and operated by Penn National Gaming. The successful transference of the license from Beulah Park to Mahoning Valley was the first of its kind in the state.
The 100,000 square foot property is located in Austintown, Ohio, and has a number of excellent features, as would be expected for any project which cost $250 million to build. At the moment, 850 video-lottery terminals (slot machines) are currently present in the casino, although up to 1,500 are planned in the future. The Hollywood Gaming Mahoney Valley Race Course, it seems, is the grandest of all the new ventures.
Over 400 employees were hired at the Mahoning Valley Race Course, which makes it a major contributor to the economy of the area, just like at the other six racinos.
Dining, entertainment and hotels
Music plays an important part of the offering at Mahoning Valley Race Course. The H Lounge is the place to find it. This well designed bar not only has live music, but also becomes a place for visitors to relax when they aren’t gambling or eating.
Most gamblers eating requirements have been catered for, with a good selection of restaurants present. The Skybox Sports Bar offers has over 20 screens showing live sports. The Ciao pizzeria, Take 2 Grill, Hollywood & Grind coffee shop, Harlan’s Holiday and Trackside restaurants also serve up a treat.
Finally, for those who plan on making more than a day out of it, there is a wealth of handy hotels nearby for you to stay at.
And the actual racing?
It is a racino after all, so aside from the machines, what about the racing itself? The Hollywood Gaming Mahoning Valley Race Course offered its first live thoroughbred race on November 24. The grandstand is expected to be sold out for the event. From here on out, it should be racing all the way. Mahoning Valley will run 21 dates through the end of the year and 64 more dates to complete the season on April 25.
You can read a full review of the property on the World Casino Directory. The profile includes a forum area to discuss Hollywood Gaming at Mahoning Valley Race Course.