Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Major workforce meeting with all counties in the Southern Tier occurs to begin the process of career placement for casino expansion

Casino Career Summit for the public set for December 28

Nichols, N.Y. - December 22, 2015 - As Tioga Downs prepares for its major expansion in the coming months, county labor executives and officials met with Tioga Downs leadership on December 11th to begin the process of placement for the hundreds of new jobs that will be added as part of phase one of the casino expansion project.

The goal of the meeting at Tioga Downs was to access the resources of and work with local Workforce in promoting available jobs, creating a pool of candidates and placing candidates in those jobs. There was an exchange of information that included job descriptions and development, promotional ideas, skill levels currently found in the local labor pools, necessary skills for the new positions, timeline of hiring and what services Tioga Downs need from the Workforce Centers.

Out of the many positions that will be available, over half of them are dealers for poker and the other table games that Tioga Downs will offer. Tioga officials announced that there will be training classes locally that will be free to the public for poker and table games, the details and schedule of which will be determined at the appropriate time and once in full compliance with New York State Gaming Commission regulations.

As part of the workforce agenda, the date for the first Tioga Downs casino career summit for the public was also announced. The summit will be held at Tioga Downs on December 28 from 12 - 4 pm in the stage front and winner's circle lounge. Tioga Downs executives have stated that this is an informational summit where interested employees can come down and find out about the many employment opportunities that will be available and how and when to apply for positions. There will be no hiring at the summit however interested job seekers will attain a lot of valuable information on the newly created positions and any requirements needed. The Available jobs will include poker room, table game and experienced dealers along with slots, guest services, cage, administrative, information technology, surveillance, facilities and food and beverage positions.

"We appreciate all of the time and effort being spent by our local workforce organizations to ensure that we place the right employees with the most appropriate positions. These folks are extremely valuable to our hiring process and we look forward to a great pool of candidates that we can put to work in 2016. We are currently in the process of building a database of potential future applicants, those interested in applying may do so by visiting www.tiogadowns.com/expansion. In addition, we encourage all interested job seekers to come out to the casino career summit on December 28th to learn more about the many local employment opportunities that will be available at Tioga Downs, it will be extremely informative," commented Jeff Gural, CEO of American Racing and Entertainment.

Tioga Downs offers live harness racing, video lottery terminals, video poker and electronic roulette. A variety of eateries are also part of the current entertainment complex. Jeff Gural owns Tioga Downs in Nichols, NY and Vernon Downs in Vernon, NY. Tioga Downs is beginning the process of transforming into a full casino gaming resort to serve the Southern Tier and beyond as well as expanding its facility and workforce to accommodate live casino gaming. In the last decade, Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs have created more than 700 family-sustaining jobs and donated millions to nonprofit organizations. For more information on Tioga Downs, please visit www.tiogadowns.com.

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Tioga Downs to host Tioga Central football championship banquet

The racino to help celebrate school's first state championship in grand fashion

Nichols, N.Y. – December 18, 2015 – Tioga Downs is set to host Tioga Central High School’s football team, staff, friends and family on Monday, December 21, 2015 at 5:00 p.m. until 9:00 p.m. to honor the school’s first Class D State Football Championship win.

The Tioga Central football championship has been five years in the making. Tioga was able to propel themselves to a 33-26 win over Ticonderoga High School and ended the season with a record of 12-1. Due to the long awaited win and overall accomplishments of the high school football program, Tioga Downs is pleased to host this event free of charge to help celebrate this significant milestone.

Tioga Downs is expecting around 240 people from Tioga Central at the celebratory banquet and the group will be joined by Jeff Gural, CEO of American Racing and Entertainment LLC, who has been asked by Tioga Central School District to speak to the students and their guests.

"We would like to congratulate the Tioga Central Tigers on their first New York State high school football championship, it is a well-deserved accomplishment for a wonderful group of student athletes. From the moment we walked in the doors of the school we could feel the energy, excitement and pride associated with being a Tioga Central Tiger. For these students to go from a period of uncertainty surrounding their cherished programs to the pinnacle event for high school sports is a terrific ending to a long journey this year. We look forward to being involved with Tioga Central for years to come and are proud of all the students, athletes, coaches, staff, volunteers and parents on a tremendous victory," commented Jeff Gural, CEO of American Racing and Entertainment, LLC.

Tioga Downs offers live harness racing, video lottery terminals, video poker and electronic roulette. A variety of eateries are also part of the current entertainment complex. Jeff Gural owns Tioga Downs in Nichols, NY and Vernon Downs in Vernon, NY. Tioga Downs is beginning the process of transforming into a full casino gaming resort to serve the Southern Tier and beyond as well as expanding its facility and workforce to accommodate live casino gaming. In the last decade, Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs have created more than 700 family-sustaining jobs and donated millions to nonprofit organizations. For more information on Tioga Downs, please visit www.tiogadowns.com.

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Annual Tioga Downs Lighted Holiday Parade Set for Saturday

Tioga Downs Lighted Holiday Parade a one of a kind event for the Southern Tier and beyond

Nichols, N.Y. - December 16, 2015 - With less than two weeks before Christmas, officials at Tioga Downs are preparing for the second annual lighted holiday parade, which will be bigger and better than the inaugural parade last year.

The Tioga Downs lighted holiday parade, which is the only event of its kind on the East Coast, is scheduled to begin this Saturday, December 19th, at 8 p.m. and will include several floats and lighted fun for all to enjoy. Participants include local schools, the Tioga Central High School football team celebrating their first State championship, fire companies, troops, marching bands, mini wagons with horses, vintage cars and many more.

Given the exclusive, high profile nature of this event as well as the significant participation and attendance planned for this year, a special media VIP area will be set up where footage of the parade can be taken and interviews with the co-emcees, participants, attendees and Tioga Downs personnel can be given.

"We had such a great turnout at last year's event, and that led to an overwhelming response for something bigger and better this year," Tioga Downs President Tom Osiecki said. "We're pleased to announce several new additions to the parade that will make it even more engaging and fun for the entire family."

The parade will be co-emceed by WBNG meteorologist Howard Manges, WETM's Samantha LaRocca and long-time radio personality Tanya Wild. Wild will be perusing the crowds and float area during the parade with live commentary from the audience.

"Parade attendees won't be disappointed, we have a great lineup this year and we anticipate filling our grandstands as we did for last year's parade. This parade is free to attend and is a one of a kind, eye-opening experience for everyone, no matter your age," Osiecki added.

In addition to live harness racing, Tioga Downs offers video lottery terminals, video poker and electronic roulette. A variety of eateries are also part of the entertainment complex. Jeff Gural
owns Tioga Downs in Nichols, NY and Vernon Downs in Vernon, NY. Gural is in the process of preparing a new proposal to apply for the state's final full gaming license. Once awarded, Tioga Downs will expand its facility and workforce to accommodate live casino gaming. In the last decade, Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs have created more than 700 family-sustaining jobs. For more information on Tioga Downs, please visit www.tiogadowns.com.

Monday, November 30, 2015

Tioga Downs announces arrival of electronic blackjack

New gaming machines proving popular among visitors

Nichols, N.Y. - November 30, 2015 - Blackjack fans can now look no farther than Tioga Downs for their chance to play an electronic version of the popular card game. Special terminals for the games were just installed in the racino last week.

Up to 12 players can play electronic blackjack at a time. Two sides have been arranged, featuring six seats per "table," and each side has a separate virtual "dealer." The minimum bet is $5 for the main game and $1 for each of the optional side bets. Blackjack pays 3 to 2, and the dealer must hit soft 17.

"Our players have been asking for blackjack, and we are pleased to be able to add the game to our extensive offerings," said owner Jeff Gural. "We anticipate that it will also draw additional blackjack fans from the area."

The new electronic blackjack games aren't the first virtual table games to be played at Tioga Downs. Earlier this year, the casino added electronic roulette to the 800 gaming machines on the casino floor. Other popular games include Sex and the City, Blazing 7's Hot Shot Progressive, Big City 5's Progressive and video poker.

In addition to video lottery terminals, Tioga Downs offers live harness racing, live music and other entertainment. A variety of eateries are also part of the entertainment complex. Jeff Gural owns Tioga Downs in Nichols, NY and Vernon Downs in Vernon, NY. Tioga Downs is the lone bidder for the state's final full gaming license in the Southern Tier region. Once awarded, Tioga Downs will expand its facility and workforce to accommodate live casino gaming. In the last decade, Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs have created more than 700 family-sustaining jobs. For more information on Tioga Downs, please visit www.tiogadowns.com.



Tioga Central wins New York State football championship today, celebrates with a motorcade visit to Tioga Downs

"I would like to congratulate the Tioga Central Tigers on their first New York State high school football championship, it is a well-deserved accomplishment for a wonderful group of student athletes. From the moment we walked in the doors of the school we could feel the energy, excitement and pride associated with being a Tioga Central Tiger.  For these students to go from a period of uncertainty surrounding their cherished programs to the pinnacle event for high school sports is a terrific ending to a long journey this year.  We look forward to being involved with Tioga Central for years to come and are proud of all the students, athletes, coaches, staff, volunteers and parents on a tremendous victory."  -Jeff Gural, CEO of American Racing and Entertainment, LLC.




Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Tioga Downs' Winterfest to offer free holiday fun for all ages

Series of seasonal events planned through 2015

Nichols, N.Y. - November 25, 2015 - The magic of the holidays begins this weekend with the return of Winterfest, a free celebration of the season for the entire family. The event kicks off November 28 and features nightly attractions such as a brand new magical dancing light and music show, singing tree shows and horse drawn wagon rides* from 5 - 9 pm. The event takes place on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays throughout December. Additional event dates are planned for December 28, 29 and 30.

Other special holiday activities are also part of Winterfest 2015, sponsored by Redneck Boots & Western Wear located on 163 Main Street in Owego. Opening night will also feature a special Ice Bar on the Winners Circle Lounge patio from 7 - 11 pm complete with musical entertainment by Travis Rocco.

Saturday, December 5 brings an ice sculpting contest to Tioga Downs from 5 - 9 pm, and on Friday, December 11, a winner will be announced in the Holiday Wreath Contest. (Homemade wreaths must be delivered to the Players Club by December 11th at 8 pm to be considered for judging.) Cash prizes of $500, $300 and $200 will be awarded to the winning wreaths.

Tioga Downs will host a Holiday Craft Show Saturday, December 12 from 2 - 9 pm and Sunday, December 13 from 10 - 4 pm. The event is free and open to the public both days.

One of the most anticipated events is the annual Lighted Holiday Parade which takes place Saturday December 19 at 8 pm. All are welcome to enter, and winning floats can earn a cash prize for first, second and third places with the top winner taking home $1000. To register your vehicle, contact Alison Meyer at 607.321.9690 or ameyer@tiogadowns.com or Sarah Hoffman at 607.425.9325 or shoffman@tiogadowns.com.

Families are invited to a special Breakfast with Santa on Sunday, December 20. The event will be held from 10 am - 1 pm, the cost is $14.99 for adults and $6.99 for children.

Winterfest will not take place on December 25, but it resumes December 26 with an Outrageous Sweater contest at 8 pm offering cash prizes of $500, $300 and $200 and also features a reindeer petting zoo from 5 - 9 pm.

Winterfest 2015 wraps up Wednesday, December 30 with closing night events set for 5 - 9 pm.

Tioga Downs offers live harness racing, video lottery terminals, video poker and electronic roulette. A variety of eateries are also part of the current entertainment complex. Jeff Gural owns Tioga Downs in Nichols, NY and Vernon Downs in Vernon, NY. Tioga Downs is beginning the process of transforming into a full casino gaming resort to serve the Southern Tier and beyond as well as expanding its facility and workforce to accommodate live casino gaming. In the last decade, Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs have created more than 700 family-sustaining jobs and donated millions to nonprofit organizations. For more information on Tioga Downs, please visit www.tiogadowns.com.


*Horse drawn carriage rides will not take place on Sundays with the exception of December 20 and December 27.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

MEDIA REMINDER: TIOGA DOWNS WINTERFEST PRESS EVENT AND SPECIAL LIGHT SHOW PREVIEW SCHEDULED FOR TONIGHT FROM 6 - 8 PM: ALL MEDIA AND MEDIA PERSONNEL REQUESTED TO ATTEND THIS SPECIAL EVENT

Good morning,

Just a quick reminder that the Tioga Downs Winterfest press conference is tonight from 6 – 8 pm.  Ken from W&W will be on hand to give the media a special preview of the first running of the light show which will make for great news coverage.

In addition, members of the media will be the first to learn about Tioga Downs’ long list of holiday activities that together create Winterfest 2015, sponsored by Redneck Boots & Western Wear located on 163 Main Street in Owego. The announcement will come during a special event set for tonight, Tuesday, November 24 from 6 – 8 pm at the casino.

The media is invited to first gather in the Winners Circle Lounge for a 6 pm news conference detailing what to expect during this year’s Winterfest. At 6:40 pm, following the announcements, media in attendance will have an opportunity to videotape/photograph a special presentation of the highly anticipated light show from the grandstands.

In addition to the media, Tioga Downs employees will also have an opportunity to attend the special preview show. Food and refreshments will be served. Members of the media who plan to attend the event are asked to RSVP to me as soon as possible.  All media staff and personnel are also invited to attend.

Please confirm the number of guests in your party along with media group and names.

If you have any questions or to confirm, please call me at 719-337-8238 or email me at stephenjamesdonnelly@gmail.com as I will not be checking this email for the rest of today.

Thank you, we look forward to previewing an even larger Winterfest 2015 tonight!

Best Regards,

Stephen J. Donnelly
Dynamic Innovation Group
719-337-8238: direct
800-930-8634: toll free

Friday, November 20, 2015

Tioga Downs Toy, Collectible show to benefit Toys for Toys, local foodbank

Public invited to shop, help those in need

Nichols, N.Y. - November 19, 2015 - A Toy and Collectible Show taking place this weekend at Tioga Downs is giving the community a chance to shop for the holidays and help those in need this season. The show, which features antique toys, trains, coins and collectibles, takes place Saturday, November 21 from 11 am - 7 pm and Sunday, November 22 from 10 am - 6 pm.

The event is being sponsored by the Marketplace at Tioga Downs, Early Owego Antique Center, Owego Elks Emporium, Dunbar Antiques and 'Erb Lady-Owego, Mapes Auction Gallery and Bostwicks Auctions.

The Toy and Collectible Show is free and open to the public, and all those attending are encouraged to bring a new, unwrapped gift for Toys for Tots. Each person who donates will receive three entries per toy to win multiple door prizes.

"It's never too early to start thinking about how we can help brighten someone else's holiday," said Tioga Downs owner Jeff Gural. "We invite the community to join us in giving back in a small way to help others. Even a modest gift goes a long way in spreading joy this time of year."

Fees paid by vendors to participate in the event will be donated to the Foodbank of the Southern Tier.

Tioga Downs offers live harness racing, video lottery terminals, video poker and electronic roulette. A variety of eateries are also part of the current entertainment complex. Jeff Gural owns Tioga Downs in Nichols, NY and Vernon Downs in Vernon, NY. Tioga Downs is beginning the process of transforming into a full casino gaming resort to serve the Southern Tier and beyond as well as expanding its facility and workforce to accommodate live casino gaming. In the last decade, Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs have created more than 700 family-sustaining jobs and donated millions to nonprofit organizations. For more information on Tioga Downs, please visit www.tiogadowns.com.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Tioga Downs invites media to special event announcing Winterfest 2015

Sneak preview for the media offers first look at this season's offerings

Nichols, N.Y. - November 16, 2015 - Members of the media will be the first to learn about Tioga Downs' long list of holiday activities that together create Winterfest 2015, sponsored by Redneck Boots & Western Wear located on 163 Main Street in Owego. The announcement will come during a special event set for Tuesday, November 24 from 6 - 8 pm at the casino.

The media is invited to first gather in the Winners Circle Lounge for a 6 pm news conference detailing what to expect during this year's Winterfest. At 6:40 pm, following the announcements, media in attendance will have an opportunity to videotape/photograph a special presentation of the highly anticipated light show from the grandstands.

"Last year's Winterfest was extremely successful and we have upped our game to bring even more fun and excitement this year.  We have an amazing line-up of events throughout November and December designed to spread holiday cheer to all ages," said President Tom Osiecki. "We look forward to sharing those details and a special sneak preview with our local media."

In addition to the media, Tioga Downs employees will also have an opportunity to attend the special preview show. However, the event itself is not open to the public. Food and refreshments will be served. Members of the media who plan to attend the event are asked to RSVP to Stephen Donnelly at the contact information above.

Tioga Downs offers live harness racing, video lottery terminals, video poker and electronic roulette. A variety of eateries are also part of the current entertainment complex. Jeff Gural owns Tioga Downs in Nichols, NY and Vernon Downs in Vernon, NY. Tioga Downs is beginning the process of transforming into a full casino gaming resort to serve the Southern Tier and beyond as well as expanding its facility and workforce to accommodate live casino gaming. In the last decade, Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs have created more than 700 family-sustaining jobs and donated millions to nonprofit organizations. For more information on Tioga Downs, please visit www.tiogadowns.com.

Monday, November 16, 2015

Local teen to perform in Macy’s parade in NYC

Nichols, NY November 13, 2015:  Jeff Gural and Tioga Downs would like to congratulate 15-year old Greene sophomore Shannon Clark from Greene High School for being selected to be a member of the 2015 Macy's Great American Marching Band.  Gural and Tioga Downs have been longtime advocates of the arts and Southern Tier youth.   Clark's father is employed by American Racing and Entertainment, parent company of Tioga Downs. The band, made up of 185 music students from all 50 states, will perform in the nationally televised Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City on Thanksgiving morning. First-year members of the Macy's Great American Marching Band are selected after submitting an audition tape and application. Those who are chosen then spend six days in NYC prior to the Thanksgiving Day event learning the parade music and choreography with the other selected band members.  For Shannon Clark, a tuba player in the Greene music program, this will be her first experience performing in front of approximately 2.5 million spectators and 50 million TV viewers. To learn more about the Macy's Great American Marching Band, visit http://www.musfestivals.com/programs/great-american-marching-band/.

Be sure to watch Ms. Clark on Thanksgiving Day during national coverage of the Macy's Day Parade as she represents the Southern Tier.  Shannon is a 15 year old sophomore in Greene NY.  A lifelong musician, Shannon plays sousaphone, trombone, and piano.  Shannon has studied with world renowned Tubist, Dr, Aaron Tindall.  Greene contact: Heather Kriesel, MS/HS band director hkriesel@greenecsd.org.

Monday, November 9, 2015

Tioga Downs invites potential bidders to learn about expansion

Upcoming events to focus on minority and women-owned businesses

Nichols, N.Y. - November 9, 2015 - Just as Tioga Downs' multi-million dollar expansion begins, efforts to include minority and women-owned business enterprises in the process are also underway. Two special networking events to provide information on upcoming bidding opportunities are slated for Thursday, November 12.

The first session from 11 am to 1 pm will be geared towards mechanical, electrical, plumbing and fire protection contractors and suppliers. An afternoon session from 2 to 4 pm will focus on site work, steel, masonry, interior carpentry, roofing and all additional trades. Both sessions will be held at Tioga Downs, and refreshments will be served.

Minority and women-owned businesses are asked to reserve a spot at either session by calling 716.855.1200 or emailing mwbe@lpciminelli.com by Tuesday, November 10. In addition, firms wishing to become prequalified as an invited bidder should contact Alicia Benjamin at abenjamin@lpciminelli.com.

"We are working to maximize opportunities for minority and women-owned businesses in our region as we embark on this exciting expansion at Tioga Downs," said owner Jeff Gural. The project itself has a goal of 30% minority and women-owned business participation.

Tioga Downs broke ground on the expansion on Friday October 30th. The entire project is expected to be completed by July 2017 and will include a new 60,000 sq. ft. amenities building with conference space, an indoor and outdoor banquet facility, a new restaurant, an outdoor pool and a six-story hotel with 161 rooms. The casino itself will also be expanded by 31,000 sq. ft. to allow for full casino gaming. The New York State Gaming Facility Location Board has recommended awarding the State's final full casino gaming license to Tioga Downs.

Tioga Downs offers live harness racing, video lottery terminals, video poker and electronic roulette. A variety of eateries are also part of the current entertainment complex. Jeff Gural owns Tioga Downs in Nichols, NY and Vernon Downs in Vernon, NY. Tioga Downs is beginning the process of transforming into a full casino gaming resort to serve the Southern Tier and beyond. Tioga Downs is in the process of expanding its facility and workforce to accommodate live casino gaming. In the last decade, Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs have created more than 700 family-sustaining jobs and donated millions to nonprofit organizations. For more information on Tioga Downs, please visit www.tiogadowns.com.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Tioga Downs thanks community for generosity during high five weekend

More than 2,700 canned goods donated to those in need

Nichols, N.Y. - November 5, 2015 - At Tioga Downs, even a weekend of celebration wouldn't be complete without giving back to the community. Thanks to the generosity of its guests, Tioga Downs is donating more than 2700 canned goods to the Foodbank of the Southern Tier.

The entertainment complex broke ground last week on a major expansion in anticipation of being able to offer full casino gaming at the property. Tioga Downs is moving forward with the multi-million dollar casino project now that the New York State Gaming Facility Location Board has recommended awarding the State's final full casino gaming license to Tioga Downs.

In anticipation of the award of the full license, Tioga Downs celebrated its planned expansion as a resort destination by inviting the public to take part in special promotions. Each guest who brought two canned goods on Friday or Saturday was able to enjoy a $5 meal at the buffet.

"We are so pleased to be able to help provide canned good to those in need while allowing our patrons to join in celebrating such a significant weekend as we look towards a bright future," said owner Jeff Gural. "We can't thank the community enough for standing beside us and telling the state they supported Tioga Downs in the quest for this license."

Once full gaming revenues are generated at Tioga Downs, the casino has pledged that they will give a minimum of $1 million dollars in charitable contributions and $500,000 in small business loans annually to help those within the Southern Tier. Tioga Downs has a rich history of giving back to a variety of organizations that work to eliminate hunger, assist veterans and more.

Tioga Downs offers live harness racing, video lottery terminals, video poker and electronic roulette. A variety of eateries are also part of the current entertainment complex. Jeff Gural owns Tioga Downs in Nichols, NY and Vernon Downs in Vernon, NY. Tioga Downs is beginning the process of transforming into a full casino gaming resort to serve the Southern Tier and beyond. Tioga Downs is in the process of expanding its facility and workforce to accommodate live casino gaming. In the last decade, Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs have created more than 700 family-sustaining jobs and donated millions to nonprofit organizations. For more information on Tioga Downs, please visit www.tiogadowns.com.

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Tioga Downs invites community to 'Vino at the Casino'

Special event offers celebration of local flavors

Nichols, N.Y. - October 28, 2015 - Tickets are on sale now for a chance to sample the best beer and wine the region has to offer at the annual Tioga Downs "Vino at the Casino" event set for Saturday, November 7. The entire community is invited to this showcase of the best food and beverage offerings in town. Several breweries and wineries from the Southern Tier will be pouring samples of their best brews and wines for guests to try from 1 - 8 pm.

Local cuisine is being provided by three vendors who were hand-selected to participate. Pacific Mountain Farms and Engelbert Farms are together known for their fresh meat, produce and dairy sourced right here in the Southern Tier. Meanwhile, Crystal City Olive Oils features a wide variety of flavor-infused oils, pastas and more.

The event continues to capture the community spirit even down to the entertainment. Local musician Virgil Cain will be the featured musical guest throughout the event. Virgil is known for being a one-man show who manages to create a full band sound. He performs on the keyboard, guitar and violin with a little help from technology to pull it together. Guests can enjoy a wide range of both original and cover songs in various musical styles. Later that evening, Andrew King will take the stage, performing after the tasting concludes, from 8 - 11 pm.

"We look forward to this event every year, because it highlights the gems of our community and gives our guests a chance to sample so much all under one roof," said owner Jeff Gural.

A $10 admission fee comes with 15 tasting tickets, which can be used for any combination of beer and wine. A $15 admission comes with 20 tasting tickets. All guests attending the event must be 21 years of age or older. Tickets can be purchased from the Tioga Downs gift shop or all Ticketmaster locations.

Tioga Downs offers live harness racing, video lottery terminals, video poker and electronic roulette. A variety of eateries are also part of the current entertainment complex. Jeff Gural owns Tioga Downs in Nichols, NY and Vernon Downs in Vernon, NY. Tioga Downs is beginning the process of transforming into a full casino gaming resort to serve the Southern Tier and beyond. Tioga Downs is in the process of expanding its facility and workforce to accommodate live casino gaming. In the last decade, Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs have created more than 700 family-sustaining jobs and donated millions to nonprofit organizations. For more information on Tioga Downs, please visit www.tiogadowns.com.

Monday, November 2, 2015

Night of Illusions Press Conference

YWCA Elmira and the Twin Tiers
211 Lake Street
Elmira, NY, 14901
www.ywcaelmira.org
Anthony Charles Novakowski
Public Relations Specialist
anthonyn@ywcaelmira.org

Press Conference
Saturday, November 7th, 2015 at the YWCA 211 Lake Street.
Please join the YWCA and Tioga Downs for a press conference on Saturday, November 7th, 2015 at 3:30 PM at the YWCA 211 Lake Street Elmira NY 14901. We will be promoting the Night of Illusions, a Drag Show fundraiser being held at Tioga Downs on November 20th 2015. The Night of Illusions is a cabaret type production with the best female and male impersonators in the Twin Tiers.  All proceeds from the show will be going to the YWCA Elmira and the Twin Tiers. We invite all members of the media to this press conference to meet some of the performers for the fundraiser.  For more information please contact Anthony Novakowski via phone 607.733.5575 ext. 232 (office), 607.425.1341 (cell) or via email anthonyn@ywcaelmira.org


Thank you,

Anthony Charles Novakowski
YWCA Public Relations Specialist & Program Educator

YWCA Elmira and the Twin Tiers
211 Lake Street
Elmira NY 14901

P. 607-733-5575 ext. 232
F. 607-733-9524

www.ywcaelmira.org
anthonyn@ywcaelmira.org

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Tioga Downs invites community to ‘Vino at the Casino’

Tioga Downs invites community to ‘Vino at the Casino’
Special event offers celebration of local flavors

Nichols, N.Y. – October 28, 2015 – Tickets are on sale now for a chance to sample the best beer and wine the region has to offer at the annual Tioga Downs “Vino at the Casino” event set for Saturday, November 7. The entire community is invited to this showcase of the best food and beverage offerings in town. Several breweries and wineries from the Southern Tier will be pouring samples of their best brews and wines for guests to try from 1 – 8 pm.

Local cuisine is being provided by three vendors who were hand-selected to participate. Pacific Mountain Farms and Engelbert Farms are together known for their fresh meat, produce and dairy sourced right here in the Southern Tier. Meanwhile, Crystal City Olive Oils features a wide variety of flavor-infused oils, pastas and more.

The event continues to capture the community spirit even down to the entertainment. Local musician Virgil Cain will be the featured musical guest throughout the event. Virgil is known for being a one-man show who manages to create a full band sound. He performs on the keyboard, guitar and violin with a little help from technology to pull it together. Guests can enjoy a wide range of both original and cover songs in various musical styles. Later that evening, Andrew King will take the stage, performing after the tasting concludes, from 8 – 11 pm.

“We look forward to this event every year, because it highlights the gems of our community and gives our guests a chance to sample so much all under one roof,” said owner Jeff Gural.

A $10 admission fee comes with 15 tasting tickets, which can be used for any combination of beer and wine. A $15 admission comes with 20 tasting tickets. All guests attending the event must be 21 years of age or older. Tickets can be purchased from the Tioga Downs gift shop or all Ticketmaster locations.


Tioga Downs offers live harness racing, video lottery terminals, video poker and electronic roulette. A variety of eateries are also part of the current entertainment complex. Jeff Gural owns Tioga Downs in Nichols, NY and Vernon Downs in Vernon, NY. Tioga Downs is beginning the process of transforming into a full casino gaming resort to serve the Southern Tier and beyond. Tioga Downs is in the process of expanding its facility and workforce to accommodate live casino gaming. In the last decade, Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs have created more than 700 family-sustaining jobs and donated millions to nonprofit organizations. For more information on Tioga Downs, please visit www.tiogadowns.com.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Tioga Downs to break ground on expansion, host “High Five” Weekend to celebrate

Tioga Downs to break ground on expansion, host “High Five” Weekend to celebrate
Tioga Downs announces a series of public events for the community to share in success

Nichols, N.Y. – October 20, 2015 – Members of the media and the public are invited to join Tioga Downs and community leaders in a groundbreaking ceremony Friday, October 30 at 3 pm. Tioga Downs is planning a multi-million dollar expansion now that the Gaming Location Board has recommended awarding the state’s final full casino gaming license to the facility. All are invited to a series of events offering a chance to share a Southern Tier High Five with owner Jeff Gural, whose vision and commitment to the Southern Tier is what made the revenue, jobs and countless other opportunities, which will come with a full gaming license, possible.

“We are so excited to begin transforming Tioga Downs into a world class full casino gaming resort,” said Gural. “I am also looking forward to this opportunity to personally thank those who were instrumental in supporting our efforts to acquire this license.”

Following the groundbreaking ceremony, invited guests will attend a private reception with a champagne toast from 3:30 until 6:30 pm. Everyone visiting Tioga Downs that day will be able to celebrate with free cake until 10 pm. Visitors can also bring two canned goods and receive a $5 lunch or dinner buffet. All food will be donated to the Southern Tier Food Bank. The standing Friday promotion, $250 Free Play Hot Seats will take place from 7 to 11 pm as usual. Special musical guest the “Gravel Ding Brothers” classic rock band will perform from 8 until 11 pm.

The celebration continues on Saturday, October 31 with the public Halloween Party from 9 pm until midnight. Cash prizes, including $1,000 for first place, will be awarded for the best costume. Free cake will be offered from 1 until 10 pm, and a $5 lunch or dinner buffet will again be available for anyone donating two canned goods. Gaming incentives include a variety of “hot seat” promotions with the “Scaryday Cat” Cash Hot Seats from 7 to 11 pm where one winner every 30 minutes gets up to $500 cash and special $2,000, $3,000 and $5,000 Cash Hot Seats at 11 pm, 11:30 pm and midnight, respectively. Musical guest “That 90’s Band” will provide the entertainment that evening.

The celebratory weekend culminates on November 1 with Jeff Gural's High Five Sunday Celebration from 1 to 5 pm. Guests who earn five gaming points and high five Jeff at Coasters Bar will receive a free Tailgate Buffet or slice of pizza and a coke (limited to first 500 people). All guests can also enjoy free cake during the party.

Once complete, Tioga Downs will be transformed into a $195 million regional entertainment destination. The expansion will also represent a significant investment in the local workforce in the form of 840 new direct and indirect jobs and $145 million of spending for the State of New York. Always committed to investing in the community, the expansion will allow Tioga Downs to further assist small businesses and charitable causes.


Tioga Downs offers live harness racing, video lottery terminals, video poker and electronic roulette. A variety of eateries are also part of the current entertainment complex. Jeff Gural owns Tioga Downs in Nichols, NY and Vernon Downs in Vernon, NY. Tioga Downs is beginning the process of transforming into a full casino gaming resort to serve the Southern Tier and beyond. Tioga Downs is in the process of expanding its facility and workforce to accommodate live casino gaming. In the last decade, Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs have created more than 700 family-sustaining jobs and donated millions to nonprofit organizations. For more information on Tioga Downs, please visit www.tiogadowns.com.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Tioga Downs to receive full casino gaming license

Tioga Downs to receive full casino gaming license
Thanks community for its outpouring of support

Nichols, N.Y. – October 14, 2015 – The New York Gaming Facility Location Board has just selected Tioga Downs for the state’s final full casino gaming license. Tioga Downs credits the outpouring of community, political and public support over the past several months for making this decision possible.

“Many members of the community were instrumental in demonstrating to the State that awarding a license to Tioga Downs would positively impact our region,” said owner Jeff Gural. “I would like to personally thank the selection committee, Governor Cuomo and the many municipalities and community leaders who made this license for Tioga Downs a reality.  In addition, we appreciate every single person who wrote a letter, sent an email or spoke in favor of a full gaming license for Tioga Downs at the public hearing. Your showing of support made all the difference in allowing us to move forward and begin transforming Tioga Downs into a full gaming resort.”

A groundbreaking ceremony and news conference are in the process of being confirmed and scheduled for later this month, those details will be announced in a subsequent advisory in the near future.

Once complete, Tioga Downs will be transformed into a $195 million regional entertainment destination. The expansion will also represent a significant investment in the local workforce in the form of 840 new direct and indirect jobs and $145 million of spending for the State of New York. Always committed to investing in the community, the expansion will allow Tioga Downs to further assist small businesses and charitable causes.

Meanwhile, to thank the community for its support, Tioga Downs will be offering its dinner buffet for free to all guests tonight (October 14), which begins at 4 pm.

“It’s just one small way of saying thanks for believing in us and allowing us to move forward with this exciting new chapter at Tioga Downs,” said Gural.


Tioga Downs offers live harness racing, video lottery terminals, video poker and electronic roulette. A variety of eateries are also part of the current entertainment complex. Jeff Gural owns Tioga Downs in Nichols, NY and Vernon Downs in Vernon, NY. Tioga Downs is beginning the process of transforming into a full casino gaming resort to serve the Southern Tier and beyond. Tioga Downs is in the process of expanding its facility and workforce to accommodate live casino gaming. In the last decade, Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs have created more than 700 family-sustaining jobs and donated millions to nonprofit organizations. For more information on Tioga Downs, please visit www.tiogadowns.com.

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Busy month means major net win for Tioga Downs

Busy month means major net win for Tioga Downs
Casino awaits license decision, prepares for expansion

Nichols, N.Y. – August 6, 2015 – Tioga Downs Casino has proven a popular destination this spring and summer, with a major boost in revenue coming this past month. Since April 2015, the casino has reported a net revenue increase each month when compared to 2014. The net revenue refers to the amount remaining with the casino after payout of prizes to players. The sharpest increase came in July 2015 when Tioga Downs had a net win of about $5.3 million, which reflects a 10.4 percent increase from a year earlier, when the net win was $4.8 million.

“These numbers tell us people are visiting the casino at a much greater rate than last year,” said owner Jeff Gural. “We thank the community for this increased support, and we await the opportunity to expand as soon as a full gaming license is granted.”

Tioga Downs resubmitted an application to the state gaming commission in an effort to acquire the last remaining full gaming license in New York. The casino has announced its readiness to begin expansion work, pending regulatory approval, to make as much progress before winter as possible.

Currently, Tioga Downs generates approximately $60 million dollars in annual slots revenue. Once an expansion is complete, a 75% increase in net gaming revenue in 2018 is expected, pumping additional tax and philanthropic dollars into the community.

Tioga Downs and Gural are known for their commitment to a number of charitable causes, particularly those related to veterans of the armed forces as well as the Food Bank of the Southern Tier that help feed those less fortunate within the region.


Tioga Downs offers live harness racing, video lottery terminals, video poker and electronic roulette. A variety of eateries are also part of the entertainment complex. Jeff Gural owns Tioga Downs in Nichols, NY and Vernon Downs in Vernon, NY. Tioga Downs is the lone bidder for the state’s final full gaming license in the Southern Tier region. Once awarded, Tioga Downs will expand its facility and workforce to accommodate live casino gaming. In the last decade, Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs have created more than 700 family-sustaining jobs. For more information on Tioga Downs, please visit www.tiogadowns.com.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Community should rally around new casino plan

Dec. 17 was a very bad day the true Southern Tier. In the morning, the state instituted an outright ban on fracking. Then, in the afternoon, the state's gaming commission awarded three casino licenses, with none in the true Southern Tier. The Lago Casino in Tyre, over two hours away, was awarded the license in the "Eastern Southern Tier."

Read the entire story at pressconnects.com

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Tioga Downs Making Push for Fourth Gaming Licence

There was no poker face needed for Tioga Downs owner Jeff Gural during Friday's press conference at his casino. He announced his intentions to open up a fund that would annually give away $1.5 million dollars to organizations and small businesses in the Southern Tier should Tioga Downs receive that license. Read the entire article at mytwintiers.com

Monday, January 12, 2015

Southern Tier lawmakers united by casino hopes

Southern Tier lawmakers are hopeful for a Vegas-style casino at Tioga Downs after Gov. Andrew Cuomo requested an additional license to be awarded for a fourth upstate casino.

The lawmakers initially expressed anger and disbelief that the Gaming Facility Location Board in December awarded a license for the "Eastern Southern Tier Region" to Lago Resort & Casino in Tyre near the Finger Lakes, not considered to be part of the Southern Tier.

Read the entire story at The Legislative Gazette

Gural plans to resubmit Tioga Downs for Southern Tier casino

Vernon Downs owner Jeff Gural said today he plans to resubmit his plans to expand Tioga Downs into a full-scale casino,should state officials decide to solicit proposals in a second bidding competition for the Southern Tier.
Gural said he didn't plan to go back to the drawing board. Rather, he said he wants to make it clearer to the New York Gaming Commission and other officials that his previous investments in Tioga Downs should by counted against those who might propose a brand-new facility.

Friday, January 9, 2015

Southern Tier Casino Rebid Stories

Gaming officials may bet on fourth license

New York gaming regulators are ready to play Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s hand and consider issuing a fourth casino license for the Southern Tier, despite remarks by a site location committee last month that they believed three was the optimum number of casinos that should be built upstate.

When the state’s gaming Facility Location Board in December said they would recommend licenses to the proposed Lago, Rivers and Montreign resorts in Tyre, Schenectady and Thompson respectively, they expressed fears that four casinos, as allowed by law, would be too many, raising the prospect that the facilities would cannibalize one another. Upstate already hosts casinos in sovereign Indian lands and bordering Pennsylvania already has some casinos up and running. | Read the entire story at timesunion.com



4th casino license under review

The state Gaming Commission is "reviewing" a request made by Gov. Andrew Cuomo last month to consider awarding a casino license in what the governor called the "true Southern Tier" after its selection of three licenses bypassed the region.

And while the commission's subsidiary Gaming Facility Location Board recommended three casino licenses to avoid too much competition, a Southern Tier bidder is downplaying the size of the facility he wants to build.. | Read the entire story at timesunion.com



Local casino applicants deserve our praise

When the casino applications were originally announced and being accepted, the Walsh and Gural families were submitting applications for a casino with the intention of helping the Southern Tier economically. Both spent considerable time and money trying to receive the recommendation for a license. | Read the entire story at Press & Sun-Bulletin



Casino License Hopefuls Band Together

A week after the state Gaming Facilities Location Board (GFLB) chose the Lago plan located in Tyre, NY out of three contenders for a state casino license in this area, losing bidders Traditions at the Glen and Tioga Downs joined forces to press Albany for a fourth license to be issued. Initially, the GFLB was slated to issue four licenses, one for each of four districts, but reneged on issuing a license to any casino in Orange County. On Dec. 17, the gaming board awarded permission to apply for a casino license to projects in Schenectady, Thompson, and Tyre. | Read the entire story at ithaca.com



Possible Fourth Casino License in NYS

Governor Cuomo asking the gaming commission to re-open the casino application process in the Southern Tier--which could help save Vernon downs. | Read the entire story at CNYhomepage.com



Governor Cuomo asks Gaming Commission to reopen fourth bid in the ‘true’ Southern Tier

Late Saturday, Dec. 27, it was announced that New York State’s Governor Andrew Cuomo submitted a letter to New York State’s Gaming Commission on Friday to re-open bidding within the ‘true’ Southern Tier Region for a fourth gaming license that was originally included for award with the passage of Proposition One on Nov. 5, 2013. | Read entire story at owegopennysaver.com



Cuomo asks casino board to award Southern Tier license

Just nine days after a state-appointed casino siting board passed over the Southern Tier for a casino license, which led to an outcry from politicians in the region, Governor Andrew Cuomo sent a letter to the board asking its members to reconsider their decision and grant another license to the economically depressed region. | Read entire story at capitalnewyork.com



Local politicians: Betrayed by Albany

Wednesday's decision to recommend a license for a Las Vegas-style casino to an operation in Seneca County came as a shock to the two local businesses whose bids fell short.
But it has local politicians scratching their heads as well. How could a place located nearly 100 miles from Binghamton be considered the Southern Tier? And how can the Southern Tier grab more of Albany's attention? | Read entire story at 12 WBNG Action News

Friday, January 2, 2015

People Celebrate Winterfest, New Year's Eve and More at Tioga Downs

Earlier this month, Tioga Downs was not recommended for a full gaming casino license, with that recommendation going to a project up north in Seneca County.
And on Friday the governor sent a letter to the state Gaming Commission and the location board, to urge officials to accept new applications for a license in what he calls, “the true Southern Tier." Many say, they just don't get it.
"The facility is wonderful. There's a lot of highlights and good programs, I've been to concerts here and other good things and we just enjoy ourselves coming here," said Libby Baker, an Elmira resident.