New York casinos now free from mandated restrictions, return to 100% capacity | Yogonet International
Rivers Casino Schenectady and del Lago among the first to resume normal operations

New York casinos now free from mandated restrictions, return to 100% capacity

A fireworks display across New York state on Tuesday evening celebrated almost all COVID-19-related restrictions on businesses, gatherings and masks being lifted.
United States
Reading time 2:16 min
Governor Andrew Cuomo lifted all pandemic-related restrictions effective Tuesday as 70% of the state's adults were vaccinated. Rivers Casino is operating at full capacity, with plexiglass safety barriers removed. Del Lago also removed plexiglass barriers, social distancing measures, extended opening hours, and reopened the casino beverages.

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced on Tuesday that the state is lifting all state-mandated coronavirus restrictions, including casinos, after reporting that 70% of the state's adults have received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine. 

Capacity restrictions, social distancing rules, cleaning protocols, health screenings and contact tracing requirements will become optional for most places. Therefore, casinos across the state are now able to reopen at 100% capacity.

Rivers Casino & Resort Schenectady  on Wednesday announced that following Gov. Cuomo’s announcement Tuesday along with approval from the New York State Gaming Commission, the resort is now back to operating at full capacity.

The resort says all plexiglass safety barriers have been removed from all of the slot machines and table games, as well as Van Slyck’s bar, reopening this Friday, June 18 for beverage service only from 6 p.m. to 2 a.m. every Friday and Saturday from now on. The casino’s hours will still remain from 6 a.m. to 2 a.m. until further notice.

Sanitization reportedly will still take place in order to keep everyone safe and the CDC’s and Governor’s guidance’s will continue to be followed for those who are vaccinated, allowing for optional mask wearing, and those who are not vaccinated to continue wearing masks. The resort says they are also looking to bring back live entertainment.

Rivers Sportsbook is open for guests to place bets on the NBA and NHL playoffs and all major sporting events. Self-betting kiosks are open during the casino’s regular hours from 6 a.m. until 2 a.m. daily. Manned betting windows are open Monday through Thursday from 10 a.m. until midnight, Friday from 10 a.m. until 1 a.m., Saturday from 9 a.m. until 1 a.m, and Sunday from 9 a.m. until midnight.

Del Lago Resort & Casino was also one of the first casinos to announce updated hours of operation and that it is rolling back food, beverage, and gaming restrictions. 

Following the announcement, del Lago began updating the Extra Cares program, by removing plexiglass barriers from many of the slot machines and table games, removing social distancing measures across the property, and re-opening the casino beverages.

Effective Friday, del Lago will remain open 24 hours on Fridays and Saturdays, with only Table Games closing those nights from 4:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. From Sunday through Thursday, the property will extend its hours of operation staying open until 3:00 a.m.

Beverage service is available on the floor for slots, table games, the Centrifico bar, the bar at DraftKings Sportsbook, and self-service beverage stations, which have been closed since the pandemic began.

del Lago Resort & Casino’s current mask policy will not change, with non-vaccinated guests and employees still required to wear a mask on-site.

“We are able to provide guests the full-service entertainment experience the property was designed for, and our team is trained to deliver. Our guests can welcome back bar and beverage service on the gaming floor, increased gaming positions, removed dining capacity limits, and added amenities,” stated Lance Young, Executive Vice President and General Manager of del Lago Resort & Casino.

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