When most people think of modern Las Vegas the first thing that will come to their mind is the glitz and glamour of the mega-casinos, such as the Bellagio,Wynn, and Mirage, or the classic casinos that have withstood the test of time, like Caesars' Palace, Flamingo or Tropicana. In the shadows of these giants exist smaller casinos that are often overlooked by the majority of the tourist, locals, and collectors of Las Vegas memorabilia. Those casinos that when passed on the street or mentioned in conversation often bring to mind the thought of "is that place still around?" Two such casinos are the Slots-A-Fun and O'Sheas.
The Slots-A-Fun casino first opened in August of 1971 and is one of the smallest casinos operating on the Las Vegas Strip. During the 1970's the ownership of Slot-A-Fun was connected to the Civella crime family based out of Kansas City. During this time an elaborate skim of money from various casinos to the mob family was operated out of the casino. This continued until the late 1970's when the owner was arrested and convicted for his role in the skim. In 1979 Slots-A-Fun was bought by Circus Circus Enterprises. For the next thirty years Under the ownership of Circus Circus Enterprises Slots-A-Fun had some of the lowest betting minimums on the strip. This came to an end around 2009 when the last of the table games in Slots-A-Fun shut down when the casino began a re-branding process, incorporating it into Circus Circus, and now it runs slot and other gaming machines.
O'Sheas Casino opened in 1989 next to the Flamingo Hotel & Casino and unlike most casinos of the era did not have a hotel. From its conception,O'Sheas has drawn the younger gamblers with their low table minimums who were often uninterested in the higher table minimums in the nearby upscale resorts. In 2011 it was announced that O'Sheas would be temporarily closed and reopened as part of The LINQ project. In April of 2012 O'Sheas closed down and a month later the building and parking structure were imploded as part of The LINQ construction project. Finally, in late 2013 the new O'Sheaswas reopened in its new location as part of The LINQ promenade.
Although often overlooked or incorporated by larger enterprises these casinos if only in name continue to exist and act as a counterpoint to the larger mega-resorts that continue to dominate the Las Vegas Strip.
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