Dodge City casino set to open today

The Boot Hill Casino and Resort in Dodge City is expected to open at 1 p.m. today following official certification by the Kansas Racing and Gaming Commission this morning.

The casino will close at 11 p.m. to prepare for a ribbon-cutting ceremony featuring Gov. Mark Parkinson and other officials at 11 a.m. Wednesday. It will reopen to the public following the ceremony.

The Boot Hill Casino and Resort, managed by Butler National Corp. of Olathe, will be the first state-owned casino to start operations.

The facility, projected to cost $90 million, will open with a $48 million first-phase development that includes 584 slot machines, 12 table games, a restaurant, saloon, snack bar and gift shop.

A second phase, scheduled to be finished in February 2012, will add a 124-room hotel, indoor pool, salon and spa, conference and entertainment facility, and more gambling and dining space.

Consultants hired by the state have projected the casino will earn between $47 million and $60 million in gambling revenue in 2012 and 2013. The state will get 22 percent of the gambling money.

The Kansas Racing and Gaming Commission has certified the rules and management of the slot machines, table games, security and computer systems at the casino.