VINTON, VA. – Construction continues on a multi-million dollar expansion at Rosie’s in Vinton, and now, after two years in operation, the amount of money the gaming emporium is bringing into the town is becoming more clear.
The gaming machines sound off from open to close and now, outside the facility, there’s plenty of noise being made by construction equipment.
“At first we weren’t sure, you know, it’s a mountain town. By the time we opened up the doors, we started drawing in customers from West Virginia, Maryland, North Carolina,” said Rosie’s General Manager Ernie Dellaverson.
Work on a new parking deck and additional 18,000 square feet of indoor space is underway, which will more than double the facility’s size, complete with a floating stage behind a new bar.
“For Vinton, you know we started off with 150 machines and we got the okay to go to 500 machines and we said we have to incorporate the stage as well,” explained Dellaverson.
When Rosie’s opened two years ago, it was a big announcement for a town in the process of reinventing itself. Rosie’s promised to be an economic engine and so far, it’s delivered.
“The projections at first were a little hard to believe, but then, once the facility opened and we started receiving those revenue checks weekly, the proof was in the pudding that this really going to help the town considerably,” said Vinton Town Manager Pete Peters.
The latest budget shows Vinton expects its businesses to generate about $3 million in tax revenue, that’s for things like business licenses, sales tax and meals tax, of which Rosie’s is included.
Separate from that revenue is the income from parimutuel betting, the technical name for Rosie’s gaming machines, which is expected to generate more than $500,000 alone for the town.
“It’s truly a gift, the timing of this couldn’t be better and it’s a substantial amount of revenue. To grow your revenue in one year and over an annual process, to grow it that substantially over one revenue that is proven to be sustainable,” Peters said.
While Rosie’s sits on the edge of town, that money is slated to be spent in the heart of it. Vinton is focused on changing the face of its little downtown and will have a capital improvement budget for the first time in well over a decade.
“We have needs in the community and to provide these amenities for our residents and businesses is going to take the town to a new level, something we haven’t been able to do in decades,” Peters said.
Back at Rosie’s, this is the new floor. As the Commonwealth continues to examine full-scale gambling and casinos in other cities, they only want to go up from here.
“From creating jobs, an economic engine for the town of Vinton and expanding operations it’s nice to be a component of many pieces,” Dellaverson said.
The expansion is expected to be complete by the end of the year. Town leaders are outlining future projects and say they welcome community input.