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Casinos tap Dec. 23 as slowest day

Dec 21, 2004 6:35 AM

Julius Caesar had his Ides of March, Pompeii had its Mt. Vesuvius and Nevada casinos have their Dec. 23.

But don’t despair, the sky won’t fall on Thursday. That’s just the slowest day of the year for Nevada casinos, according to an informal poll of casino managers.

"It will be pretty quiet in here, except for a few die-hard players," says a shift supervisor at a Station casino. "It gives the staff a chance to take a few days off before the holidays."

The supervisor said Christmas Day used to be the slowest day, but lately travelers have been coming to Las Vegas, many of whom stay the week leading up to New Year’s.

"The concept of holidays at home has changed," he said. "People may unwrap gifts on Christmas morning, then hop in the car and drive to Vegas."

The significance of Dec. 23 as the slowest date may ultimately be tied to Christmas shopping.

"If you’re a procrastinator like me, then you will wait until Dec. 23 to do your last-minute shopping," says a slot playing local at the Gold Coast. "But you won’t catch me shopping on Christmas Eve ... you’d have to be an idiot to shop the day before Christmas."

— Ron Fortune