Mohegan Sun casino to remain closed through Memorial Day: Foxwoods likely to follow suit

After extending the temporary closure of its Mohegan Sun casino in Connecticut in late April, the Mohegan Tribe has once again pushed back the reopening of its Uncasville property through the Memorial Day weekend due to continuing concerns over the COVID-19 pandemic.

Closed since mid-March due to the coronavirus, the casino owned and operated by the federally recognized tribe announced last month that it would be extending its temporary closure by another two weeks after initially saying it would be back in business on April 30.

“no opening date determined at this time.”

Will remain closed:

An announcement on the casino’s website states that the “Mohegan Sun will remain closed to the public through at least May 26th, while a statement on its Facebook page explains…

“As the health and safety of all team members and guests is our top priority, Mohegan Sun will remain closed to the public with no opening date determined at this time. We are continuing to work with local and regional health experts and government officials in order to make an informed decision on a re-opening date, which we hope to announce very soon.

Meanwhile, rival Foxwoods Resort Casino in Mashantucket also remains closed and is unlikely to reopen by Memorial Day, according to the 7BALL Fairfield Citizen.

Foxwoods likely to follow suit:

Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Chairman Rodney Butler reportedly told the newspaper that the Tribe’s “current plans don’t have a specific opening date, but on or before Memorial Day is not likely given the amount of preparations our team is doing to make Foxwoods a safe environment for team members and guest alike.”

Prior to the current ongoing health crisis, neither of the Connecticut casinos has closed their doors to the public since opening in the 90s.

As sovereign nations, the two tribal casinos are not subject to state laws and therefore did not have to close in March under Governor Ned Lamont’s Executive Order, which closed all non-essential businesses in the southern New England state, but on March 16 agreed to voluntarily close.

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Gov. Lamont said at the time…

“This is an important cooperative agreement between sovereign nations and the State of Connecticut,” Lamont said in an emailed statement after a day of uncertainty. “We all share the same goal toward ensuring our residents are safe and keeping public health at the top of our minds during this public health emergency. I applaud the tribes for their collaboration and partnership.”

Massachusetts tribal casinos:

Also temporarily closed are all three Massachusetts casinos including MGM Springfield, Plainridge Park and Encore Boston Harbor.

Particularly hard hit by the coronavirus pandemic, according to the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), as of May 13, 2020, the neighboring state [Massachusetts] ranks 3rd, after New York and New Jersey in COVID-19 deaths at 3,726, while Connecticut ranks significantly lower with 457 having succumbed to the highly-contagious disease.