BEST CASINO Minneapolis 2002 - Grand Casino Hinckley
The Mille Lacs band of Ojibwe know their customers. They run two highly successful casinos, sucking in neighbors, cabin-goers, and out-of-state vacationers with just the right mix of slot machines, buffets, and special events (which recently included a kickboxing tournament)--all housed in a clean, well-kept space with friendly service. Now, Vegas this ain't: Concerts are geared to Midwesterners, and the lineup is heavy on country music. The names and the draw are big, though: Hank Williams Jr. is an upcoming headliner. The Hinckley location (as opposed to the Mille Lacs establishment) wins the honors here for its proximity to the Twin Cities--a quick jaunt up I-35 (about an hour, barring fishing-opener or holiday-weekend traffic) and you're there. The casino won't be hard to spot; in fact, it's difficult to ignore, with frequent billboards pointing the way. Once the lights have led you through the entrance--take advantage of the free valet parking!--your gaming opportunities include video poker, blackjack tables with limits ranging from $3 to $2,000, and more than 1,500 slot machines. Minnesota gambling traditionalists might feel more comfortable at a game of bingo, and that is available frequently, too. Eighteen-year-olds and up are welcome to drop their cash here, and those over 21 can wet their whistles--a luxury unavailable at the metro area's Mystic Lake Casino. For better or worse, having a few drinks in you may make it easier to risk that hard-earned paycheck. No matter what game you pick, it'll give you better odds than the lottery.