News from a casino that’s about an hour from me.  This may interest you if you’re in college, and want to plunk down your textbook money at a soft 1-2 game.

Tama casino offers poker to gamblers under age 21
The Meskwaki Indian tribe plans to offer poker to 18- to 21-year-old gamblers next month at its Tama casino, but state regulators said the young players will be barred from slot machines, blackjack and other games.
State law prohibits people under 21 from casino gambling, but the tribe has notified state officials it will offer poker to underage players under a provision of the federal Indian Gaming Regulatory Act.
The federal law allows Indian tribes to offer bingo and certain other gambling not governed by a compact between the Tama casino and the Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals. Young gamblers will apparently play, and the casino will not get a cut of the pot, said David Werning, the inspection department’s spokesman.

"We don’t know what they are talking about in terms of limitations, if any," Werning said.
The move comes as poker enjoys huge popularity among college-age students, many of whom watch cable TV poker games or play online for free and for cash.
A recent nationwide study estimates 2.9 million young people gamble on cards weekly.
It also comes as the Meskwaki tribe, which spent $111 million to expand its casino and hotel complex, faces tough competition from new casinos in Waterloo and Riverside.

Tribal Chairman Adrian Pushetonequa sent a letter to state officials Monday about the tribe’s plans. The poker games will start June 1; marketing will begin Thursday. Pushetonequa’s letter said the poker games will be offered as a "nonhouse banked game." The tribe’s executive director, Larry Lasley Jr., was unavailable for comment Thursday.
The Winnebago Indian tribe stunned state officials in 1999 when it lowered the gambling age to 18 for all casino games, including slot machines, at its WinnaVegas Casino near Sloan. The tribe contended it was unbound by state laws due to tribal sovereignty. Winnebago tribal leaders agreed in March 2005 to set the minimum gambling at 21 under a new compact reached with the state.

Jack Ketterer, administrator of the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission, said Thursday that Iowa’s 17 state-regulated casinos will not follow suit with underage poker games. "We don’t have that option," he said.
Wes Ehrecke, president of the Iowa Gaming Association, a trade group for state-regulated casinos, said he has more questions than answers about the Meskwakis’ plans.
"What will be the enforcement and regulating mechanism so they are not playing other games when they are not playing poker?" Ehrecke asked. "This could be another example where state-licensed casinos are at a competitive disadvantage with the sovereign-nation status of tribal casinos."