For all you gambling fans out there, you will love the state of Iowa – the Hawkeye State. Iowa is one of the most open-minded and gambling accepting US States. With the exception of the usual vagueness surrounding online gambling (and even for this, you could argue that it’s widely accepted) all other forms are gambling are legal.
To summarize, most forms of land based gambling are legal at casinos. The legitimacy of online casinos are vague and unclear, but not law enforced and therefore is open to residents. The sports book betting was legalized in May 2019 and is now open to residents. The State offers lottery, participating in the multi jurisdictional Powerball and Mega Millions. And you can find horse and dog racing betting options. In essence, everything you could want is available in Iowa for gambling.
In this guide, we will walk you through the online casino scene, the changes in sports betting, the state lottery, ownership of a slot machine and land based casino reviews.
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Iowa Online Gambling
The legality of online gambling in Iowa remains unclear. With outdated laws that are complex and ambiguous, there should be an attempt by law setters to untangle the web gambling statutes. Iowa laws, however, are very clear in declaration if found to be breaking the law. The state will enforce gambling laws if applicable and will pursue litigation. Normally, you will find that it is the online casino operators or sports book that will face penalties and fines and NOT the player. Hence, you can safely assume that playing on online casinos is acceptable, and if there were to be fines and penalties, it would be the online casino operator and not the player that would be liable.
Playing on online casinos is safe and it would be extremely surprising if any action, let alone a fine was enforced.
Iowa ranks as the 31st in the US for playing at offshore online casinos. Wagering an estimated $7.0 million per year, it ranks just above Kansas and behind Oklahoma. The state with the largest wagering for offshore online casino is California at $180 million.
Overview of Iowa Casinos
Iowa has 23 land based casinos and racinos which offer all forms of casino table games. You will find more than 20,792 slots and gaming machines. There are a total of 457 table games.
Ameristar Casino Hotel Council Bluffs
2200 River Rd, Council Bluffs, IA 51501, United States
The property has a 38,500 square foot casino gambling floor with 1,588 slots, 23 table games, five restaurants and a 160 room hotel with 40 suites. Has great food at the buffet, good service, a little expensive but worth it.
Lakeside Hotel Casino
The casino has over 1,000 slots and video poker machines, 13 table games and a live action poker table. Machines run from penny slots in the main casino up to $25 machines in the High Limit area. Table games include blackjack, craps, baccarat, roulette, and specialty games. Clean environment and great buffet with lots of variety and great service.
Meskwaki Bingo Casino Hotel
1504 305th Street, Tama, Iowa
The 67,553 square feet casino has 1350 slot machines to offer along with 21 table games. Gambling is not a lot different than any other Casino in Iowa. But go to the steak house. Very good food, and good prices. Seems like it is kind of under the radar.
Catfish Bend Casino at Pzzaz!
3001 Winegard Drive, Burlington, Iowa
The sleek yet small casino offers 700 slot machines and 18 table games. Good place to go spend your money and hopefully win some as well. Great service and food.
Diamond Jo Worth Casino
Diamond Jo Worth Casino, 4713 Wheelerwood Rd, Northwood, Iowa
It is a high energy venue with almost 40,000 square feet of gambling space, over 1,000 slots, 30 table games, 7 live-action poker tables, 4 restaurants and a pie bakery, plus a meeting and event center.
Riverside Casino and Golf Resort
Gaming consists of 58,000 square feet of excitement including a 14-table poker room, VIP lounge, and 1,000 slots, with electronic roulette, as well as 35 gaming tables featuring blackjack, Mississippi Stud, Ultimate Texas Hold Em, Pai Gow Poker, craps, three card poker, roulette, and more. Clean, nice staff, super friendly people overall great place.
Rhythm City Casino Resort
Gaming at the new land-based location includes a 33,800 square foot gambling floor, with more than 800 slot machines, including video poker and over 66 Progressive machines,and 23 table games featuring craps, roulette, Pai Gow Poker, Three-Card Poker, Seven-Card Stud, Ultimate Texas Hold’em, Mississippi Stud, Twenty One Plus Three, and blackjack. There is also a high stakes gaming area, VIP Lounge, and for the poker enthusiasts, the casino has an 8-table poker room which offers Limit and No Limit Texas Hold’em and Omaha -cash games and tournaments. A small casino but good service and friendly employees.
Wild Rose Casino and Resort Clinton
777 Wild Rose Drive, Clinton, Iowa
Modest full-service casino including 10 table games, 567 slot machines, eateries & occasional events. Very nice facilities, great staff, and delicious food.
Horse and dog races
Both are legal in the state of Iowa with venues also offering slot machines, Racinos. Dog racing, is a dying industry in the states, and therefore racinos are allowed to operate 24 hours with revenue mostly coming from their gaming machines. There is also available off track betting with live simulcast of races and terminals established at various venues across the state.
Welcome Iowa to the world of sports betting! Sports betting legislation was passed on May 13, 2019, thus becoming the 13th state to join the ranks of legalized sports betting. Yet to be operational, we anticipate in a years time that the sports betting infrastructure will be fully developed and open to the public.
Similar to many other states that allow owning a slot machine, the condition of owning is that it must exceed a certain age. This requirement is to prevent the use of slot machines from profiteering via gambling and that owning a slot machine is viewed as a collectors item or antique. The slot machine must be 25 years or older to be legally owned by a resident in Iowa.
The state offers the multi jurisdictional lotteries: Mega Millions and Powerball. Also available are scratchie tickets and pull tabs which are sold at various outlets scattered across the state. The legal age to participate in the state lottery is 21, which is unlike many other US that offer state lotteries – accepting 18 or older.
Iowa's Gambling Laws Interpreted by a LawyerIowa was among the first states to move to completely legalize online sports betting, positioning it alongside the state’s casinos, racetracks, lottery ticket sales, and charitable gambling. Iowa Code 99 et seq.; Iowa Code 725.5 et seq.
Sports Betting: Sports betting is legal in the state of Iowa with the first brick-and-mortar sportsbooks being approved for operated on July 30, 2019, with at least two casino companies (the William Hill casinos and those using Bet.Works) also accepting online sportsbook making.
Race Betting: Like in many states, horse betting is legal in Iowa at its racing tracks as well as other venues that allow pari-mutuel betting. Off-track and simulcast betting is permitted at the state’s multiple off-tracking betting facilities. Online race betting is not specified, though many platforms do accept bets from Iowa residents aged eighteen or older.
Online Gambling: Despite support by the state’s land-based casinos, the state has yet to pass an online poker or gambling bill, and, thus, similar forms of gambling remain unregulated. Thus, individuals wishing to participate in online gambling, including poker and other such games of skill, and who are twenty-one or older, must bets online through licensed and regulated domestic and offshore platforms operating outside of the state.
Online Gaming: Social online gaming through licensed casinos is permitted, with online casinos like DoubleDown, MyVegas, and others accepting Iowa residents.
Disclaimer: The information in this multi-state research is made available by a licensed, U.S. attorney, and is for informational purposes only. We make no representations that the information is complete or correct in its entirety. It should not be construed as providing specific legal advice, and you acknowledge that no attorney/client relationship exists between us. This brief should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed gambling and entertainment lawyer in your state.
Wikipedia: List of casinos in Iowa.