Shopping, restaurants, arts, and golf courses make a good time in Montgomery County a sure bet. With the recent legalization of sports betting in Pennsylvania and the opening of two sportsbooks the stakes for excitement have been raised.
Two locations, the Oaks Race & Sportsbook and Valley Forge Casino Resort, are now taking sports betting action. Some of the sports available for wagering include football (NFL & college) basketball (NBA & college), baseball (MLB), hockey (NHL), boxing, MMA, golf, tennis, and more.
“People were already doing this activity with bookies or driving to New Jersey or flying to Las Vegas. The beauty of it now is they can do it in Montgomery County,” said Matthew Cullen, Senior VP of Interactive Gaming and Sports for Parx Casino.
Greenwood Racing, parent company of Parx Casino, officially launched sports betting at the Oaks Race & Sportsbook (600 Cresson Avenue, Oaks Corporate Center) in March 2019 with sports betting technical partner Kambi.
The Oaks Race & Sportsbook, formerly the Valley Forge Turf Club, was rebranded and upgraded with a $1 million renovation to refurbish the property and add new amenities. It features over 100 new televisions to so no one misses a second of the action. Patrons can bet the spread, moneyline, total, props, parlays and teasers at any of the six tellers and fourteen kiosks. The 26,000 square foot facility has a full dining room with seating for over one hundred guests, a delicatessen and a full bar and lounge. Food service includes breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Patrons of the Sportsbook, especially during any of the Triple Crown races, are familiar with the hunt club atmosphere. There is still a similar ambiance and a strong simulcast-racing crowd.
“We have a lot more options for players to bet on instead of just racing,” commented Cullen. “All the feedback we’ve gotten at South Philadelphia, Parx, and Oaks has been quite positive. People are happy sportsbetting is finally here. Even the racing patrons, at the end of the day, are sports fans, and a lot of them are broader sports fans. We’ve seen a very positive reaction to the rollout of this new regulated activity. It’s been really good for racing as well, it’s helped raise our racing handle. Sports bettors might not normally be exposed to racing content and the option to bet on racing and now they are starting to do that along with the sports games they are betting on.”
If you are on one of Montgomery County’s golf courses or taking in a show at the Keswick Theatre, you will be able to place a bet from your phone. According to the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board, mobile Pennsylvania sports betting will launch in May 2019.
“The rollout out of retail sports betting is a game changer and when online happens, it will be a major game changer,” said Cullen. “Philadelphia is sports crazed city to begin with. You layer in sports betting on top of it, if you’re a sports fan it’s nirvana. It’s the best place to be.”
Oaks Race & Sportsbook hours of operation are:
Monday through Friday, 12:00pm to 11:00pm
Saturday, 10:00am to 12:00am
Sunday, 10:00am to 11:00pm
Hilton Garden Inn Valley Forge/Oaks is located within walking distance of Oaks Race & Sportsbook. This casual hotel boasts a 4.5 Trip Advisor rating and offers a bar/restaurant, an indoor pool, plus free Wi-Fi, parking & an area shuttle.
For more information about Valley Forge Race & Sportsbook, visit www.parxracing.com/turf_vf.php or call 610-650-0100.
Valley Forge Casino Resort houses the only sportsbook in the region inside a hotel. Valley Forge Casino Resort was recently purchased by Las Vegas-based Boyd’s Gaming Corp. and its partnership with FanDuel marks their first retail presence in the Philadelphia area.
Property-wide enhancements in 2019 include 250 new slot machines, complete renovation of the gaming floor, a new exclusive sports betting venue and Event Center renovations. The 1,800 square foot sports betting retail location is located near the main entrance of the casino. The FanDuel Sportsbook will feature seven teller windows, 29 video displays (televisions and odds screens), 2 sports tickers and seating for more than 30 customers.
“Our experience operating the top sportsbook in New Jersey at the Meadowlands Racetrack will serve us well as we enter Philadelphia and compete for customers in an area with some of the most passionate and knowledgeable sports fans,” said Matt King, CEO, FanDuel Group
“The reception has been great,” said Dave Zerfing, General Manager of Valley Forge Casino Resort. “The first two weekends couldn’t have been better. There were a lot of people and a lot of excitement. It’s another amenity to this property. This gives people another reason to come and have fun. You don’t even have to be gambling to have fun at a sportsbook. It’s the excitement that comes out of it. The experience is really great.”
At Valley Forge Casino Resort there is plenty to do before or after the game with six dining options, live entertainment and various nightlife choices. Valley Beach opens on Memorial Day with a deejay on Friday nights and live entertainment every Saturday night throughout the summer.
Sports fans should also note that Valley Forge Casino Resort hosts the Philadelphia Sports Card and Memorabilia Show. The show has hundreds of hundreds of vendors and appearances by current and former athlete. The next shows are scheduled for September 13-15, 2019 and December 6-8, 2019
“It's almost like a kid on Christmas for sports fans when you see it. Its like a trip down memory lane,” said Zerfing.
The FanDuel Sportsbook will be open to the public at the following times:
• Monday-Thursday from 10 AM – 1 AM ET
• Friday from 10 AM – 2 AM
• Saturday from 7 AM – 2 AM
• Sunday from 8 AM – 1 AM ET
*Tickets can be cashed at the cage after these hours.
For more information on Fanduel Sportbook at the Valley Forge Casino resort click here.