Lines form for Las Vegas casinos reopening to eager guests: 'It has made me excited'

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Las Vegas casinos have reopened months after closing due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The Nevada city announced the planned reopening last week, stating some casinos on the famous Las Vegas strip, as well as other tourist attractions like the Bellagio fountains and LINQ Promenade, would be partially reopening beginning June 4.

As part of ongoing health efforts to stem the spread of COVID-19, casinos are only able to operate at 50 percent capacity for the time being.

As part of ongoing health efforts to stem the spread of COVID-19, casinos are only able to operate at 50 percent capacity for the time being. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

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The scheduled comeback for the Strip, which has been shuttered for 78 days, was met with open arms as residents waited in line for their favorite casinos to open their doors. According to the Las Vegas Review-Journal, 75 people stood in line for the Red Rock Casino to open its doors at 12:01 a.m. Thursday. Other reports shared nearly 100 people had lined up for the Green Valley Ranch Resort’s reopening, which is located a handful of miles away in Henderson.

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“The reopening of Las Vegas, it has made me excited,” Las Vegas resident Plenty Williams said to the Review-Journal while hanging out at The D Casino.

Though Vegas fans and residents flocked to the reopening, the Strip is not quite as it was.

As part of ongoing health efforts to stem the spread of COVID-19, casinos are only able to operate at 50 percent capacity for the time being. Table games, which usually seat six have been limited to three players, and slot machines have had seats removed between them to maintain social distancing.

Director of casino operations at Red Rock Resort, Derek Boshers, told the Review-Journal that the casino is using BioProtect 500 disinfectant to keep the place clean as it opens to the public.

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“We took every single chip and hand-cleaned them with toothbrushes,” Boshers said. “Then did the same thing with the cards, the dice, the machines, the pillars — anything the guests might touch. Then we sprayed everything with the BioProtect 500.”

Though face masks remain optional – it was an option that many visitors reportedly decided to waive

Though face masks remain optional – it was an option that many visitors reportedly decided to waive (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

People are also checked with thermal scanners, which takes a person’s temperature via the wrist, as they enter the casinos. Those with a temperature of 100.4 of above are not allowed in.

Though face masks remain optional – it was an option that many visitors reportedly decided to waive. According to the local outlet's report, 70 to 75 percent of guests who visited upon reopening declined to wear a mask, though casinos do offer them to guests.

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Despite the changes, though, guests are happy.

“It’s nice to get out and see people,” said visitor Matt Kuszewski to the Las Vegas Sun. “You miss the socializing.”

“This is a tuxedo day. We’re kicking off Las Vegas. People are excited and curious,” casino owner Derek Stevens said to the outlet.

More casinos, like the MGM Grand and New York-New York, are scheduled to open throughout the day with the same safety protocols in place.

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