NORTHWOOD, Iowa - The Diamond Jo Casino’s sportsbook will open Thursday with a Vikings legend taking part.
Pro Football Hall of Famer John Randle will make the ceremonial first bet Thursday at noon at Diamond Jo as FanDuel and Boyd Gaming open up the sportsbook.
Gov. Kim Reynolds signed a measure in May that allowed sports betting, beginning at noon Thursday. It requires players to first travel to a casino to prove their age and identity and set up an account.
Iowa is the only Midwestern state with legalized sports betting. Indiana is set to start next month, and Illinois has approved it but could be several months away from startup because rules are still being drafted.
That means sports betting enthusiasts are likely to travel to Iowa casinos from adjacent states to sign up and boost business for border casinos
Iowa's law requires mobile betting to be done within the borders of the state. Betting software includes precision geofencing technology that nullifies bets made outside of Iowa.
Sports betting is limited to those 21 and older, and the state will collect a 6.75% tax on net receipts. Taxes and licensing fees are estimated to bring in estimated annual revenue of $2.3 million to $4 million annually.