Four-Card Poker and My Date With the Chumash Indians

Without question, one of the real “perks” of being a part of Las Vegas night casino entertainment team is being able to test out new casino-style games in advance of their subsequent debut onto the casino gaming scene at a later date. Our company has always been a pioneer in the Las Vegas night casino party rental industry when it comes to having these new casino games available for their clients to enjoy, before anyone else in the Southern California entertainment market. With that in mind, it should go without saying that, when a new game DOES make it’s way onto the casino gaming scene, it’s up to US to put it through it’s paces.

You ALL know where this is going: It’s “Story Time” once again. Hey, that’s why we’re consider the “propaganda ministry” around here. (Grin) OK, so, here’s one for the books…..

It’s late 2008, time for another family adventure. (I’d call it a “vacation,” but, when it comes to MY family, “adventure” is a much better term. You’ll see.) It’s decided by my dearest wife that it’s time to forget the casino party industry for one weekend, scoop up the kids, hop in the car, and head to a city in central California called Solvang, a word that i’m guessing is Danish for “bakery swap meet.” OK, I think to myself, the good wife needs a getaway to have some fun, online gambling do some shopping, and find out what an Aebleskiver is. (Don’t ask. The only thing I can cook is microwaveable foods.)

So, off we go: up Highway 101, past Cachuma Lake, and, lo and behold, there it is. Hold on to your Aebleskivers, I can’t believe it: It’s a little Dutch town right here in California. Quaint, nice, friendly people, great food (I highly recommend the Solvang Restaurant), lots of places to see and visit.

I mean, LOTS of places: Including one more that I didn’t know existed….. It seems that, just up the road from “Aebleskiver Alley,” there’s this brand new, bright and shiny building that stands out like a sore thumb. And, when I saw the name on this non-Solvang-looking monstrosity, it immediately caught my eye. You couldn’t miss it.

“Chumash Indian Casino and Spa.”

We drove right by this huge casino on our way into Solvang, and when my wife saw me looking at this marvel of casino engineering, she KNEW that the Chumash Indian tribe was going to be an unplanned part of her vacation. (Told you it would end up being an adventure. It just wouldn’t be right if we didn’t have a lil’ adventure.)

Now, when I was in school, if you were to poll every history teacher that ever tried to interest me in the fine art of historical studies, they’d all tell you that everything I know about history would fit into a small paper cup. Over the years, i’ve improved my historical knowledge ever so slightly, especially in the area of American history, but I have to admit that American Indian history has slipped many a shot by this goalie.

“Do me a favor,” my wife immediately blurts out, as we’re passing this Chumash Casino. “Don’t go investigating that place until we’re on our way out of town, after our vacation.” It’s a deal, I say. So, after all of us have had our fill of every Danish pastry this side of Solvang, it’s time. Vacation over, time to check out the “Chumash Indian Casino and Spa.”

Now, I may not know a whole lot about the Chumash tribe, but I DO know the law when it comes to both the casino party industry AND California casinos in general. NO KIDS. Wifey’s not interested in seeing this place, anyway. The only gambling she’s ever done was marrying me, and since she’s lost her only “wager,” she’s not looking to recoup her losses. She’ll stay with the kids in the comfort of the covered patio outside the entrance to this place, and tells me, “go do your thing.”

So, inside I go. Yep, pretty nice place. It is new, clean, and has the game roster you’d expect would be present in a California Indian-based casino: No Roulette, no Craps (not even card craps), PLENTY of slots, and when it comes to the table games, it’s pretty much the usual suspects (BJ, Caribbean, 3CP), excepting for one.

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