Traffic, crowds expected for racino opening weekend

AUSTINTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – As people continue to flock to the brand new Hollywood Gaming racino in Austintown, customers know things will continue to be busy this weekend.

Rosalie Nolfi of Lowellville said she stopped by on Friday knowing large crowds will try to get a look at the new facility Saturday and Sunday.

“Oh, we know it is going to get busier. We were just trying it today. If it was too busy we were going to turn around and go back home or go down to Mountaineer,” Nolfi said.

For the most part, traffic has been running smoothly. Sargent Brad Busey with the Ohio State Highway Patrol urges those planning to come out this weekend to take their time.

“We want everyone to be patient. No road rage issues or anything like that. Give plenty of distance between each car so that if somebody stops in front of you, you don’t get rear-ended or something like that,” Busey said.

Since opening day Wednesday, Penn National has paid to have at least 12 off-duty troopers watching over intersections and the nearby interstates between 10 a.m. and midnight as well as crews from the Department of Transportation.

Cones are being used to mark lanes and a message board is in use to keep everyone moving in the right direction.

With the exception of about 20 minutes Wednesday afternoon when the racino lots were full, there’s been a steady flow in and out.

“I can believe it. My husband likes to park far away, but we noticed there was some parking spaces up front,” said Pam Traino, Boardman. “We are excited to get into this casino and do some gambling.”

Early revenues will be reported when the Ohio Lottery releases its monthly VLT report in early October.

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