‘Big things’ promised for new Chilliwack gaming centre

The exterior of the new centre is being finished and interior fixtures are being installed, said Howard Blank of Great Canadian Gaming.

Chances Community Gaming Centre Chilliwack is set to open its doors November 1.

The building exterior is being finished, and interior fixtures are being installed, said Howard Blank, vice-president of Great Canadian Gaming.

They opted to go with the ‘Chances’ branding for the new gaming centre, measuring 28,000 square feet at Olds Drive and Young Road.

“Big things are happening in Chilliwack,” trumpets the notice on the Chilliwack Bingo website, telling the public about the November opening.

“At that time, our current Chilliwack Bingo operations will be moving to the new facility with many entertainment, gaming and hospitality offerings.”

Expect a fairly big name to play the opening.

“The first weekend will be quite exciting, and there is definitely some special programming being planned,” Blank said.

Word around town is that it’s iconic Canadian band, Chilliwack, or possibly its founder Bill Henderson set to perform.

“I can’t confirm who it is,” he told the Progress Tuesday. “We’re not ready to release that yet.”

“I can tell you that whenever we open a facility in a community, we always have interesting acts to go with the local demographics,” he said in tantalizing fashion.

International acts like Michael Bublé and The Temptations have been part of past grand opening celebrations for Great Canadian Gaming properties.

The new gaming centre in Chilliwack will feature 150 slot machines, electronic bingo, paper bingo, and other games, but no card games, like Black Jack or 21. They’ll have a live entertainment space, as well as a restaurant with a food primary with alcohol licensing.

Chilliwack Bingo Association, which represented about 50 local charities, sold its assets to Great Canadian Bingo for $10 million. They’re expected to receive trailing payments in future years, contingent on facility performance, as part of the deal inked last year.

The reason for the keen corporate interest likely had something to do with the fact that Chilliwack Bingo logged the highest bingo revenues in the province, with an astounding $11.1 million in 2009-10, whereas Vancouver’s Planet Bingo came in second highest.

Chilliwack Bingo is now owned by Chilliwack Gaming Ltd., a wholly owned subsidiary of Great Canadian Gaming Corp.

jfeinberg@theprogress.com

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