Sportsbooks Open At Ontario Casinos

sportsbook at a Great Canadian casino
Published: October 29, 2022 11:05 am EDT

On Friday (Oct. 28), the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation (OLG) announced that Ontario’s casino service providers are moving forward with the introduction of sportsbooks at select casinos across the province, in compliance with provincial regulations.

“We are proud to have worked closely with the gaming industry and our partners in the Ontario government on this next phase of growth in Ontario’s gaming market,” said Duncan Hannay, President and CEO of OLG. “Sportsbooks in casinos will offer a diverse and integrated entertainment experience for players, give our service providers a stake in the sports gaming market, and bring more jobs and economic benefits to host communities.”

“I’d like to congratulate OLG for partnering with Ontario’s gaming operators to bring sportsbooks to casinos,” said Paul Burns, President and CEO of the Canadian Gaming Association. “This  ongoing collaboration will result in new and expanded options for sports betting – including some first-of-their-kind sportsbooks in Canada – which will attract more people to visit Ontario’s casinos and encourage continued growth across the industry.”

A total of 10 Great Canadian Entertainment properties in Ontario are now taking sports bets.

Four of its destinations, including Great Blue Heron Casino & Hotel, Pickering Casino Resort, Elements Casino Brantford and Shorelines Casino Belleville, have launched dedicated sportsbook lounges, called Great Canadian Sportsbooks, where sports enthusiasts can watch live games, enjoy their favourite game-day food and beverage options, and place bets at one of several available kiosks.

Six additional destinations in Ontario (Casino Woodbine, Shorelines Casino Peterborough, Shorelines Casino Thousand Islands, Elements Casino Mohawk, Elements Casino Grand River, and Elements Casino Flamboro) now feature sportsbook kiosks within existing gaming areas, where guests can place bets on various sporting events at a kiosk or through the casino cash cage.

“We remain laser-focused on enhancing the overall experience for our guests at our gaming and entertainment destinations, and the launch of sports betting at our Ontario destinations is another demonstration of these efforts,” said Tony Rodio, Chief Executive Officer, Great Canadian Entertainment. “These onsite additions reflect Great Canadian’s commitment to investing in our facilities and the communities where we operate, as well as creating new jobs and additional revenue that will support local municipalities in Ontario.” 

The news was not as warmly welcomed by Woodbine CEO Jim Lawson. Horse racing is still not part of the sports betting package provided by these operators, and he would like to see the horse racing industry be allowed to participate in this sector.

"Sportsbooks coming to Woodbine & Mohawk racetracks today. Horse industry is not allowed to participate - so wrong," said Lawson in a Twitter post on Friday "[Government] prioritizing private casino before [Ontario] non-profit, Woodbine, that [Government] subsidizes. Woodbine desperate to earn its own way - let us compete in our own business."

(with files from OLG; Great Canadian)

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