GARRETTSVILLE, Ohio (WKBN) – Aaron King gave away over $3 million last year and says he can’t wait to do it again because losing that money is actually good for his business.
“They’re great for business and even the off nights, people come in to buy tickets. They’ll order a cheeseburger, maybe get a beer or something to drink.”
King owns Skylane Bowling in Garrettsville, which hosted the record-breaking Queen of Hearts game. He had no idea it would get so big.
“We are kind of lucky here. We have a big facility, a lot of parking, but when we started getting over 5,000 people to a drawing, it started creating concerns around the plaza,” King said.
The games draw in lots of customers. So much so that businesses often close the day after a drawing to recover.
“If the cards aren’t drawn right, you could have what happened here and the next thing you know, you have thousands of people in your parking lot,” King said.
Ohio Attorney General Spokesman Dan Tierney said the Queen of Hearts walks a fine line between gambling and contest.
“The Queen of Hearts game is really just the latest game that’s come up that’s kind of like gambling but is not necessarily prohibited by state law. It’s in a gray area.”
Tierney said state government has been talking about regulations and King expects them to come soon.
“It wouldn’t hurt to have some sort of regulations on the tickets and that. I foresee it coming in the future at some point in time but for the most part, just kind of let us do our thing because the people love it and it’s a lot of fun,” King said.
Skylane has another drawing starting September 17 that will be worth at least $13,000 — but the pot will only grow from there.