CAMPO INDIAN RESERVATION — While the long-term success of the Golden Acorn Casino remains to be seen, the marketing push that enticed crowds of eager gamblers up the hill to Wednesday night's grand opening was a definite triumph.
Some casino-goers waited on the rumble strips along the Interstate 8 shoulder for nearly an hour just to take the Crestwood exit to get to the Golden Acorn. The traffic was so thick it made the Las Vegas Strip look like a free-flowing expressway.
Inside the 60,000 square-foot casino, people were packed shoulder-to-shoulder as they scrambled for one of 750 slot machines to open. Others milled around, getting a feel for the place.
"Ooh! Over there!" said one woman to her companion when she spotted a recently abandoned slot machine. Before the two could get there, though, another gambler had slid onto the stool.