When the latest COVID-19 restrictions came about, which closed dine-in restaurants and entertainment complexes including theaters and casinos, a few casinos in our area announced they'd still be open.  Are they just being rebellious, like the 77-year-old barber did earlier this year? Or do they have a reason why they don't have to close? Remember, they did close back in March during the first wave.

Well, Fox 17 went to Gun Lake Casino and asked that question and found out that legally, they don't have to follow the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services' latest order, because well, they're not technically a part of the state. Gun Lake Casino actually sits on Sovereign Land, because it's part of a federal reservation, which means technically they have to follow federal rules, not state rules.

Now in fairness, that doesn't mean they're just staying open just to be edgy and defy an order. As Fox 17 reports they re-evaluated their safety measures and feel that they are operating with both guests' and staffs' safety in mind. And casino management says they re-evaluate their safety measures on a weekly basis.

As Gun Lake Casino's Assistant General Manager, Carter Pavey, told Fox 17,

"We have, like I said, team members that go around that do nothing but clean and sanitize with chemicals that are designed to specifically help eliminate COVID on contact surfaces."


"As we continue to evaluate, we still take this very seriously. I think we have one of the more advanced ‘Play It Safe Initiatives’, everyone calls it something a little different. We have one of the most advanced programs in place. We are very strict on those programs,"

They also require everyone to walk through a thermal scanner so their core body temperature is taken, and they require everyone to wear face masks at all times in the casino.

While they're not shutting down the casino, they are closing certain parts in the next few days, according to Fox 17. As of Friday they are closing down the restaurants and will close down card tables except in the high limit room because as they told Fox 17, they can control the number of people playing in that area.


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