Wanaaha Casino Open with Covid-19 Safety In Place

Press Release

The WANAAHA Casino located in Bishop California is owned and operated by the Bishop Paiute Tribe under the authority of the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act and the State of California through a mutual Compact agreement.

Although the State of California has put a stay-at-home order for the region stopping all non-essential services, the Bishop Paiute Tribe has determined that all Tribal enterprises are essential services. The revenue generated by commercial operations such as the Casino is crucial to Council’s duty to provide services to the community through many community programs. Without the income from the Casino and other operations, many programs and services would go unfunded and could lead to serious issues for our most vulnerable Members.

The WANAAHA Casino is the single largest revenue producer in the tribe and sustains many of these programs. Based on this position, the Bishop Paiute Tribe will maintain the WANAAHA Casino operations with modifications for the foreseeable future. Starting immediately, the Casino will operate from 6 am until 2 am Sunday through Thursday and 6 am until 4 am on Friday and Saturday. Additionally the TuKaNovie Restaurant will be open from 7 am until 9 pm weekdays and until 10 pm weekends with limited indoor and outdoor seating. The WANAAHA Lounge will continue to serve beverages from 10 am until 2 am with limited seating in the Lounge.

In an effort to protect all those that come through the Casino doors we are taking extraordinary measures by going above and beyond the recommendations of the CDC, The State of California and other experts in implementing our health and safety protocols. Along with other Tribes in California who have made similar decisions to maintain operations, we have instituted several measures to protect everyone including, but not limited to:

  • Staff hand washing requirements
  • Social distancing in all areas
  • Sanitation stations in many locations
  • Separate designated smoking areas
  • Partition screens throughout the casino
  • Closure and deep cleaning nightly from 2am until 6am
  • Staff training on proper procedures
  • Reduced occupancy in all areas
  • Temperature screening for Team Members and Guests

The Casino Management and the Tribe are monitoring the local situation, as well as the actions of other California Tribes DAILY and are prepared to take further action if deemed necessary by the Bishop Paiute Tribal Council.

We wish to thank our loyal guests and dedicated staff as we continue to navigate these new waters and hope all of our Team Members, Guests and Families have a safe and thankful holiday season.

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10 Responses to Wanaaha Casino Open with Covid-19 Safety In Place

  1. Lydia December 13, 2020 at 3:49 pm #

    Ok the casino is on tribal sovereign land. And yet… anyone on said tribal sovereign land who needs ICU beds is going… where?

  2. Sherry L Kriescher December 13, 2020 at 8:39 am #

    All tribes who have less than 500 machines are considered non gaming tribes and according to compact, get $1million fron the revenue sharing fund. This money is sent 4 times a year. Federal government is also sending Tribes covid relief money. So how are these guys hurting for money… or is it the per capita will not be as high as when a lady was running it.

    • banks, loans, construction costs, etc. December 13, 2020 at 2:04 pm #

      Well, there’s that big, new, expensive Toiyabe clinic that has frequently been in the news with their personnel, governing board and financial problems, a second gas station being built, and a big casino expansion that had the out of town construction crew here for months building it. My guess is the tribe has some bank loans to pay on top of their other obligations.

  3. sugarmags December 10, 2020 at 1:50 pm #

    this seems incredibly assinine…no masks for indoor activity??? It’s now clear that the virus is here and that it spreads indoors incredibly efficiently. This will put the communities of Bishop and Mammoth at high risk. Why can’t the Inyo County health dept. do something about this? The reservation doesn’t exist in a vacuum. They are not a self sufficient society, sharing schools, stores, hosptials etc. We are all one community regardless of sovereignty. If they do this, open unsafely now, then I will forever boycott them and hope others will too. In general I support the tribe in their goals but this is unforgiveable.
    There is no question that this will effect our area in a negative way.

  4. VillageWitch December 9, 2020 at 5:46 am #

    The tribal councils greed is beyond all logic! Maybe they need their own hospital, oh wait, they can’t even manage a clinic. To say that all business on the reservation is essential is absurd. Boycott, boycott, boycott. They are putting the community and their employees in danger. A list of their safety protocols are amusing at best.

  5. Rick O'Brien December 8, 2020 at 8:02 pm #

    Based on the theory that the tribe MUST continue with gambling as usual to provide for the many needs of said tribe , has ANYONE ever walked out of there a winner ? Who has extra $$ to throw at the casino just so they can dole it out to THEIR people ? Bishop folks, spend your money on groceries, not the slots .

  6. Charles O. Jones December 8, 2020 at 6:12 pm #

    Everybody’s job or business could be considered “essential” to them. I’m disappointed in this decision from the casino.

    • David Dennison December 9, 2020 at 9:47 am #

      Charles O.Jones
      I agree and disagree with you on this one.
      I agree jobs are essential to everyone,and the casinos shouldn’t get special treatment during the COVID.
      But if someone happens to temporarily lose their job or jobs,there is work out there to be had through this,keeping food on the table and a roof over their heads.
      I lost two of my part time jobs back in early May,due to people unable to keep me employed doing what I was doing for them.
      Instead of thinking “woe is me”,what am I going to do ?,I did a few clicks and posts on my old 2007 model Windows 7 computer and within a week I had secured local jobs to more than make up for the income I was going to lose.
      There’s work out there to be had.
      Maybe not easy or what you might want to be doing,maybe not making as much money as you were making before.
      But better than going broke,going through your savings,getting deep in debt, or getting behind on rent or a mortgage.

  7. erik simpson December 8, 2020 at 4:19 pm #

    To date I’ve been impressed by the Tribe’s response to our mutual crisis. This time, I’m not so sure. This doesn’t sound right.

  8. Why special rules for some December 8, 2020 at 3:32 pm #

    This is BS. keeping everyone out of ICU should be the goal. Restaurants are critical to the owners and employees to feed their families. Where is the science to substantiate eating outside increases the likelihood of contracting COVID-19? Why is the Casino allowed to have inside dining? I guess the virus will not affect you of you are on tribal land! We should be concerned with keeping everyone safe. The governor is an idiot and a tyrant that breaks his own rules and regulations then has a contrived sorry. Wear a mask, social distance and wash your hands.


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