A closer look at Downstream Casino’s reopening plan

Downstream Casino Resort will start a phased reopening on May 21st.
Downstream Casino

QUAPAW, Okla. – “It’s been a long two months,” says Jani Cummings, General Manager at Downstream Casino Resort.

That time was filled with eerie silence on the casino floor.

“It’s been weird, you know. We’ve never seen it like this before,” says Maintenance Technician Ryan Gaier.

But in less than two weeks, the casino will come back to life.

“I am excited because it gets to bring all these great people back in the building. Not just the employees but also the guests that we built relationships with,” says Cummings.

The casino is set to start a phased reopening on May 21st. But things will get going pretty slowly.

To start off, only a few of the restaurants — Wa-Na-Bée-Déa snack bar, Legends Sports Bar, and the Ma-Kó-Sha coffee shop — will be open, no valet or shuttle service will run, every other floor at the hotel will be closed, and hours will be limited. The casino will also take the temperature of every guest and employee who enters the building, hand sanitizer will be throughout the casino, plexiglass barriers will be put between the dealer and players at table games, all employees on the floor will wear masks, and masks will be available for patrons.

All with a lot of measures in place for social distancing.

“You’ll see signs on the floor, you’ll see plexiglass at every restaurant, the cage, you’ll see it at the front desk, at the player’s club. You’ll see tables removed, slot machines removed,” says Cummings.

In phases two and three, the rest of the restaurants, like Red Oak Steakhouse, will reopen, additional hotel rooms will reopen, and hours will be extended. The casino hasn’t set a timeline for when phases two and three will start.

The casino is currently working to bring back around 450 of the 925 employees who were furloughed. One of them is Ryan Gaier, who was excited to bet back to work.

“I was fishing at the moment. I wanted to throw my pole in the water and run straight back to work, so I was pretty excited. Fortunately, I was one of the ones that did get called back early. I feel fortunate for that every day,” says Gaier.

The rest of the employees will be brought back as the rest of the casino and resort reopens in phases two and three.

“We’ll slowly bring other things online, lengthen the hours, but not all at once. We want to see how it goes,” says Cummings. “We wanna make sure people are comfortable coming back. We wanna do it right.”

Downstream is set to reopen on May 21st at 2:00 pm. Residents will be able to make hotel reservations for Memorial Day weekend next Monday (5/18).

Phase one hours are:

May 21st 2:00 pm-midnight.
May 22nd 10:00 am-2:00 am.
May 23rd 10:00 am-2:00 am.
May 24th 10:00 am-midnight.
May 25th 10:00 am-midnight.

After Memorial Day weekend, phase one hours will be Sunday through Thursday 10:00 am – midnight. Friday and Saturday 10:00 am to 2:00 am.

If you want to read the release put out by Downstream Casino announcing the reopening, just follow this link: https://www.koamnewsnow.com/downstream-casino-announces-phase-1-to-reopen-may-21/

Related stories:

https://www.koamnewsnow.com/northeast-oklahoma-tribal-nations-work-on-plans-to-reopen-casinos/

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