One of the 2,352 reasons casinos are great is that you can grab yourself a drink in the wee hours of the morning as you double down just one more time at the blackjack table. A stiff little double whiskey makes the losses a smidgen better or at least a little justifiable. Hey, I just lost $200 but I got drunk! Wait, it's 4 a.m., I gotta get out of here.
While it's almost certain that the free-booze train will not be riding through Cleveland's casino, at least unless you're a big-spender, the ability to purchase a drink between 2:30 and 5:30 a.m., the general no-no time around the state, is still in question. And that's largely because of the objection of a group that so obviously doesn't want you to have fun.
The Ohio Restaurant Association is lobbying hard against 24-hour liquor sales. The trade group says round-the-clock drinking would give the casinos an unfair advantage over its 2,400 members, most of whom are bound by rules that limit alcohol sales from 5:30 a.m. to 2:30 a.m.
"This unfairly affects the restaurant industry in the state of Ohio," Jarrod Clabaugh, trade group spokesman, said.
Sorry, no pounding vodka tonics at 3:30 in the morning.
The Columbus Dispatch notes that the legislation heading to the Ohio Senate and House in the next few weeks does not contain a 24-hour liquor exemption nor one that allows for free drinks.
First, they tell you that you can't smoke inside anymore, ruining one great tenet of casino life. Second, they're telling you that you have to sober up for three hours too. Buckeye lawmakers have clearly lost sight of what's important.