When Warren and Cindy Smith went to the River Spirit Casino on Monday, he was hoping to win maybe $9,000 at a table game.
What he ended up leaving with was one of the largest jackpot amounts River Spirit has seen in years — $1.1 million in the statewide progressive jackpot in the Monopoly Money Grab.
Warren Smith said he and his wife, who are regulars at the casino, were waiting to play their game of choice, Ultimate Hold ‘Em, which was full, so they went to the Monopoly Money Grab slot game to pass the time.
They put in $100 and started playing. When their money ran down to $10, they put $100 more into the game, and about three spins later, they got a bonus spin.
When they rolled that bonus, it landed on the jackpot.
“When it got to the major jackpot, I thought it was $1,100, but it was $1.1 million,” Warren Smith said. “I couldn’t believe it.”
He said they have been working on remodeling their house, so they will be putting some of the money into finishing those projects. Both Warren and Cindy Smith are disabled and use wheelchairs, and they also hope they can buy a new van.
“We try to win the Ultimate Hold ‘Em jackpot that I think was at $9,000,” Warren Smith said. “So we thought we could win that sometime. But $1 million is something you dream about, but you never really think you’re going to win. And then we did.”
He said he and his wife go to River Spirit Casino about once a week to eat and play, and he thinks they will continue to do that.
River Spirit Casino staff said they are happy to see a deserving couple win so much money.
Pat Crofts, CEO of River Spirit Casino Resort and Muscogee Nation Casinos, said it’s a great day when they have such big jackpot winners at the casino.
“It’s a big deal here,” Crofts said. “We’ve had some other jackpots near this, but this is one of the largest we’ve seen here.”
Crofts said that in the Monopoly Money Grab’s statewide progressive jackpot, people play against one another on about 200 machines across the state.
A percentage of money that gets played goes into a jackpot reserve, and as more people play, the jackpot amount increases. The game machine manufacturer, a national company called Williams, then pays out the jackpot to winners in a 20-year installment.
“This is a fairly new game,” Crofts said. “It’s only been on our floor for a few weeks.”
He said River Spirit Casino had a $2.5 million progressive jackpot a couple of years ago, but Warren Smith’s jackpot was the largest since then.
“We give away jackpots every day, but not this big,” he said. “We do have a lot of large jackpots on a daily basis.”