The grand opening of Mount Airy Casino Resort is scheduled for today October 22nd, 2007 and is bound to impact the Poconos significantly one way or another.Â It will make history as the first freestanding casino in Pennsylvania bringing additional attention and traffic to the area which is likely to help local businesses.Â
There is controversy over the fact that the money made will not be going back to the local area but instead is being used to cut Philadelphia’s wage tax and assist with horse racing.Â As a local myself I was hoping for a bit of a property tax cut as I’m sure many other people were.Â I think that at least something should be given back to the locals directly as they will be dealing with the increased traffic and other possible downfalls associated with the casino.Â Â
There is the potential for the casino to impact theÂ Poconos in a very positive way and set an example for the state – its my hopes that we see that happen.Â Some of the positives I forsee are additional jobs, new restaurants and the potential for local businesses to see increased sales.Â
It does start off on the wrong foot though when the owner is currently under investigation for possibly lying about his connections, or lack there of, with organized crime.Â Yikes!Â This issue is just dripping with controversy on all sides, I just hope people can be civil and work towards making this a positive for the community.Â
As of today, the casino becomes a reality so we should try to makeÂ this a great opportunity for the Poconos whether we support it or not.Â We are likely to see more casinos pop up in the area soon enough, soÂ do you think that this will change the way that we live in the Poconos forever?Â Or is it just a big story today and ‘just another casino’ tomorrow.Â Â
Past and Present
Mount Airy has already made an impression on the pastÂ andÂ has added to the history and intrigue that the Poconos has today.Â Â I’ve included someÂ past and present links for your enjoyment.
Mount Airy is auctioned off(article)
Previous owner commits suicide(article)
1979 Mount Airy Commercial(YouTube)
The video mentions Pocono Gardens which I believe is the scary run down place a couple blocks away from Mount Airy that has recently been knocked down in sections.