Casino Gambling in Mississippi
Mississippi Casino Guide
What happens when an entire state's gambling industry is devastated by an unprecedented hurricane of epic proportions? Do all the casino fans turn to Mississippi online gambling sites to play their favorite games? Or do they head to neighboring states to enjoy land-based casino entertainment?
There were some serious questions being asked after Hurricane Katrina wiped out several Mississippi casinos, and not all of them have been answered. And with the state losing about $500,000 per day in tax revenue, Mississippi needed to find a way to recover those costs. One way that proponents of online gambling in Mississippi floated was a state-run casino. Unfortunately, that never materialized. But for fans of choice, that's actually a really good thing. Read on to discover the gaming opportunites for players in Jackson, Gulfport and Southaven.
Looking to gamble online? Click here to skip to the top Mississippi Casinos.
- Population: 2,984,926
- Land Size: 46,923 sq. miles
- Population 18+: 74.8%
- Gambling Age (Casinos): 21
- Gambling Age (Lottery): N/A
- Number of Casinos: 34
- Casinos had to be located on the water prior to 2005
- Hurricane Katrina changed that - casinos can now be located on land
- Elvis Presley was born here
- Nickname: Magnolia State
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Margaritaville160 5th St
Biloxi, MS 39530
Silver Slipper Casino5000 S Beach Blvd
Bay St Louis, MS 39520
Bally's Tunica1450 Bally's Blvd
Tunica Resorts, MS 38664
Pearl River ResortHighway 16W
Choctaw, MS 39350
Treasure Bay1980 Beach Blvd
Biloxi, MS 39531
History of Mississippi Gambling
Mississippi might be the third biggest casino gambling market in the United States, but the state's gambling history, both in terms of traditional casinos and Internet Mississippi casinos, feels less like Vegas and more like Orlando. An Orlando theme park, specifically. And a roller coaster ride, to get even more detailed in our analogy.
While illegal, unsanctioned forms of gambling have existed along the Mississippi river for centuries, it wasn't until July 1992 that the first legit casinos hit the river and coastal regions of Mississippi. And their arrival changed the landscape forever, even before Mississippi online gambling sites.
The coastal regions that were once on the verge of economic collapse became major tourist destinations for casino gamblers in Mississippi. Dozens of legal riverboat casinos dotted the water. And the future looked pretty great until Hurricane Katrina devastated the entire industry.
The industry has been rebuilt, and it looks quite different than it did in 2005. A healthy mix of private casinos, Native American casinos, and Mississippi online casinos has changed the betting landscape for tourists and residents. And this is a great thing.
Local Casino Venues
There are 34 casino properties in Mississippi, including 31 land-based casinos run by the state and three Native American casinos where you can legally play. Up until 2005, all private casinos were obligated by law to be run out of a boat. Land-based casinos in the traditional sense of the word weren't permitted. But when Hurricane Katrina wiped out the majority of the Gulf Coast casino industry back in 2005, laws were changed to revive the industry.
Mississippi Casinos on the Gulf Coast are now permitted to be located on land. And they don't even have to be located right on the water. State law permits casinos on the Gulf Coast to be set back up to 800 feet from the shoreline. The change was made as a result of necessity. If casinos were forced to be located on the shore, or on riverboats, most properties would have to close their doors because the insurance premiums would have been too high.
Casino Gambling Age Restrictions
Mississippi online gamblers who are used to seeing the 18+ logo on Internet casinos should note that the actual legal gambling age in Mississippi isn't what they think it is. The one exception is bingo where players only have to be 18. To play at a land-based casino, you must be 21. And technically, the same law applies to Internet Mississippi casino sites, although many enforce an over-18 rule due to being located offshore.
The State of Online Gambling in Mississippi
Ever since Hurricane Katrina changed the betting landscape in Mississippi, online gambling proponents have pushed for a state-run casino and poker room. Supporters argue that Mississippi could tap in to the billions of dollars flowing out of the country, especially after residents started playing at Mississippi casinos online after the hurricane shuttered the doors of many popular riverboat casinos.
In both 2012 and 2013, inspired by similar legislation in Nevada and New Jersey, the state legislature introduced an online casino bill. However, lack of support meant that the bill never actually made it onto the floor of the house for a reading. Right now, the state seems to be focused on reviving its land-based casino industry. However, Mississippi online casino players from Gulfport to Hattiesburg are free to play at the many Internet casinos that are run from out of state.
The Future of Mississippi Casino Gambling
It's been nearly a decade since Hurricane Katrina changed the face of gambling in the state. Many casino players tried out Mississippi online casinos to help satisfy their appetite for casino games. And because of their convenience and high payout percentages, many Mississippi online gamblers never returned to the land-based sites.
But many of the land-based sites have been drastically improved, and the fact that the casinos may now exist on land, up to 800 feet from the water, means that many Mississippi casinos are bigger and better than their pre-2005 counterparts. With a nice mix of almost three-dozen land-based casinos and thousands of Mississippi online casinos, the future of casino gambling in Mississippi is definitely bright.
Gambler's Note: Mississippi casino laws are always changing. The information on this page is for informational purposes only. Always consult Mississippi state law and local regulations before playing at an Mississippi online gambling site.
Mississippi Council on Problem and Compulsive GamblingA help line, Gamblers Anonymous and other treatment referral options for gamblers who have lost control of their lives.
National Council on Problem Gambling/MississippiSelf-help resources, an online workbook for compulsive gamblers, and assessment tools will prove helpful to those suffering with this addiction and their families.