LEWISTON - The Clearwater River Casino & Lodge (Casino) ceased operations back on March 18, 2020 as a safety precaution in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Since then, staff have been working diligently to prepare to welcome back customers to the gaming floor by completely sanitizing the facility and initiating new safety measures. Collective mitigation efforts in this region appear to have minimized the threat of COVID-19 in the community as there has been a decline in COVID-19 cases. In addition, the Casino has met all of the recommended standards set forth by Nimiipuu Health and the Nez Perce Tribal Emergency Operations Command Center to safely reopen. As a result, the Casino will be reopening on Friday, May 22, 2020.
With the decision to reopen, the Casino has focused on two priorities in order to move forward; providing a safe work environment for all staff and providing a safe environment for customers.
New protocols will include temperature screenings for staff and customers prior to entering the facility, enhanced cleaning and sanitation, social distancing requirements, mask usage, and no smoking. The Casino will also have specific hours of operation, to allow for ample cleaning and sanitation measures. The new hours will be Sunday-Thursday 8:00 a.m.-12:00 a.m. (midnight), Friday and Saturday 8:00 a.m.-2:00 a.m.
Some areas of the establishment have also been repurposed to allow for additional spacing of the gaming machines. In addition, hand sanitizer stations have been made available throughout the facility. Beverage stations will be available but managed by staff. The Qeqiit Restaurant will be offering limited food options, to-go only. The Stadium Sports Bar will continue to provide drinks. The Yawwinma Café will have limited food, snacks, and drinks available.
All new safety protocols adopted are based on the Nez Perce Tribe’s COVID-19 Standard Operating Procedures, the Centers for Disease Control standards, and Nimiipuu Health recommendations.
“We have taken the last couple months to ensure we are taking every necessary precaution. We want all of our customers and staff to feel safe while in our establishment. We are excited to welcome back all of our customers and we look forward to providing everyone with our legendary hospitality,” commented Nez Perce Tribe Enterprises Executive Officer, Kermit Mankiller.