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Wild Rose Jefferson Leadership
Monday, November 24, 2014
Press Releases
Attachment: View attached PDF
New General Manager Named for Wild Rose Jefferson
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INDUSTRY VETERAN EXPERIENCED IN OPENING NEW PROPERTIES

Wild Rose Introduces Mike Couch, GM for New Jefferson Casino

JEFFERSON, Iowa (Nov. 24, 2014) — Wild Rose officials today formally introduced Mike Couch of Weston, Fla., as the new general manager for Wild Rose Jefferson. Couch, who has two decades of experience in gaming, officially accepted the position last week.

“We are extremely impressed with Mike’s credentials and experience,” said Tom Timmons, president of Wild Rose Jefferson. “He has opened two casinos and helped manage two complete casino renovations, demonstrating that he knows how to navigate the construction process and get a property ready for business.”

SUCCESSFUL TRACK RECORD

During his career, Couch (pictured right) has been licensed in Florida, Illinois and Iowa. In fact, he was part of the initial management team at Wild Rose Emmetsburg in 2006 before moving to Gulfstream Park in Hallandale Beach, Fla., which lies between Ft. Lauderdale and Miami. He rose quickly through the ranks over the past seven years and most recently held the position of director of gaming at Gulfstream Park, which features casino gaming and thoroughbred racing.

Before working at Wild Rose Emmetsburg, Couch also spent 10 years working for Boyd Gaming in Peoria, Ill. He started as a slot machine technician and held several technical and supervisory positions. He studied business and electronics technology at Illinois Central College in East Peoria.

“He is a great fit for the Wild Rose team,” said Gary Kirke, chairman of Wild Rose Jefferson. “He’ll be a great leader as we complete construction and open this casino and events center.”

Timmons echoed the praise:  “Pretty much everywhere in his career, Mike has advanced by achieving results and getting projects done on time and under budget. That’s no small feat,” Timmons added.  “We feel confident that this community will join us in extending Mike a warm welcome to Wild Rose Jefferson, Greene County and the entire region.”

SEASONED VETERAN

Couch, 43, landed in the gaming industry after four years in the United States Air Force. Stationed in Europe and the U.S. he worked as an avionics and electronics technician for the Electronic Combat Squadron. Born and raised in Pennsylvania, Couch said he is happy about returning to the Midwest.

“This is a great opportunity for me and my family,” Couch said. “The Midwest and Iowa in particular offers a different culture and value system that appeals to me. I have heard nothing but good things about Greene County, and it feels good to roll up my sleeves and get to work on this project.”

Couch and his wife, Dana, have two teenage daughters. The Couch family will move to Iowa sometime in 2015.

“We haven’t worked out the timing for our family move with school schedules and other considerations,” he said. “Frankly, my focus centers on the project and building the right team to meet our objectives for completion and opening.”

His military training will come in handy as he tackles the many and varied aspects of this project:

“In the military, you often find yourself working as part of a team on a project that has a lot of moving parts. Building a casino from the ground up definitely fits that bill, and a good team is vital to being successful,” Couch pointed out.

 

About Wild Rose Jefferson:

Wild Rose Jefferson received a gaming license from the IRGC on June 12, 2014. The casino project will add 275 jobs to the region with an estimated annual payroll of $7 million. Since 2006, Wild Rose Casinos have generated more than $25 million for community projects in Palo Alto and Clinton counties. Wild Rose Emmetsburg and Wild Rose Clinton have generated more than $115 million in local and state taxes.

About Grow Greene County Gaming Corp.:

Grow Greene County Gaming is the nonprofit license-holder for Wild Rose Jefferson. Its primary charge is to distribute community grants from a share of the gaming revenues. GGCGC’s members are: Norm Fandel, president; Craig Marquardt, vice president; Peg Raney, secretary; Bob Allen, treasurer; Lori Mannel; Rick Morain; Kate Neese and Brenda Muir. Mike Mumma serves as legal counsel to the group. Media inquiries concerning Grow Greene County Gaming should be directed to Norm Fandel, 515-370-0992, or Peg Raney, 515-370-0013.

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For More Information, Contact:
Jamie Buelt, Spokesperson
515-249-1857 or 360-961-0096

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Wild Rose Jefferson Construction Update
Wednesday, October 22, 2014
Press Releases
Attachment: View attached PDF
Wild Rose Casino & Resort Construction Update, Jefferson Iowa
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PROGRESS WEATHERS THE WIND AND RAIN

Wild Rose Jefferson Officials Expect Casino Project Construction to Be Completed by August 1, 2015

JEFFERSON, Iowa (Oct. 22, 2014) — The construction of the Wild Rose Jefferson Casino and Resort continues to progress despite some wet and windy weather this fall. In fact, the site preparation and construction are keeping pace with the formal schedule presented to the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission earlier this month.

Tom Timmons, president of Wild Rose Jefferson, informed commissioners at the October IRGC meeting, as well as in a letter addressed to Chairman Jeff Lamberti, that the company expects to complete construction of the facility by August 1, 2015.  

PROJECT BENCHMARKS

The underground site work, including the extension of water mains, storm sewer and utility conduit, is largely complete. The foundation is in place for the casino structure, which is being constructed with tilt-up concrete panels and steel. The crew will complete the installation of the 64 tilt-up panels this week and begin steel erection. Steel started arriving at the site last week and will continue this week. A wind storm on October 13th knocked down five of the concrete panels, but replacements were poured and delivered to the site a few days later.

“The momentum is good, and the weather will hopefully continue to cooperate over the next several weeks,” Timmons said. “Our next big benchmark, after erecting the steel, will be the enclosure of the structure, which our construction manager estimates should be accomplished before Christmas.”

Mid-States Steel Corp. of Boone is providing the structural steel, while Jensen Builders Ltd. of Fort Dodge has been contracted for steel erection. The labor force on site ranges between 35 and 45 people right now. Crew numbers will fluctuate as construction progresses. 

“We are happy to be using quality, local Iowa contractors and vendors in the construction of the Jefferson casino and events center,” Timmons added. “In hiring these two companies located in Boone and Webster counties, we continue to demonstrate and underscore the regional reach and economic benefits of the project.”

HOTEL CONSTRUCTION

BriMark Builders in conjunction with local investors is developing and constructing the 71-room hotel connected to Wild Rose Jefferson. As part of his communication with the IRGC, Timmons noted that the hotel construction will start in earnest in December of 2014, and it is scheduled to be complete in June of 2015.

JOB FAIR AND APPLICATION PROCESS

Interest in jobs and employment started the day Wild Rose Jefferson received its license, and the company continues to field calls and receive emails on a daily basis from prospective employees.

“We couldn’t be more pleased with the excitement that people have about the project when they contact us,” Timmons said. “We have already heard from several talented people in the community and from across the region and we look forward to assembling a top-notch staff.”

The company will host a job fair in the spring of 2015. At that time positions and descriptions will be posted and job seekers can provide resumes and fill out applications. Wild Rose officials will be on hand to answer questions and provide a more detailed description of the hiring process. The job fair will be publicized and promoted in the local and regional media.

About Wild Rose Jefferson:

Wild Rose Jefferson received a gaming license from the IRGC on June 12, 2014. The casino project will add 275 jobs to the region with an estimated annual payroll of $7 million. Since 2006, Wild Rose Casinos have generated more than $25 million for community projects in Palo Alto and Clinton counties. Wild Rose Emmetsburg and Wild Rose Clinton have generated more than $115 million in local and state taxes.

About Grow Greene County Gaming Corp.:

Grow Greene County Gaming is the nonprofit license-holder for Wild Rose Jefferson. Its primary charge is to distribute community grants from a share of the gaming revenues. GGCGC’s members are: Norm Fandel, president; Craig Marquardt, vice president; Peg Raney, secretary; Bob Allen, treasurer; Lori Mannel; Rick Morain; Kate Neese and Brenda Muir. Mike Mumma serves as legal counsel to the group. Media inquiries concerning Grow Greene County Gaming should be directed to Norm Fandel, 515-370-0992, or Peg Raney, 515-370-0013.

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For more information, contact:
Jamie Buelt
, spokesperson
515-249-1857 · 360-961-0096
jbuelt@enQstrategies.com

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Wild Rose Jefferson Groundbreaking
Thursday, July 10, 2014
Press Releases
Ceremonial Groundbreaking Scheduled for July 10
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Wild Rose Jefferson and Grow Greene County Gaming Celebrate Official Groundbreaking on Casino Project

JEFFERSON, Iowa (June 30, 2014) – Wild Rose Jefferson will officially break ground with a ceremonial turn of the spade on Thursday, July 10, 2014, at 1 p.m. at the casino site on the northwest corner of U.S. Highway 30 and Iowa Highway 4. 

The event will commemorate the first major benchmark since the company and Grow Greene County Gaming Corp. received the enabling gaming licenses for the project on June 12, 2014, from the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission. In addition to company leaders, local officials and media, Wild Rose Jefferson and GGCGC have invited members of the IRGC, and Rep. Chip Baltimore from Boone has agreed to speak.

"The official groundbreaking is a fitting tribute to kick off what we expect to be a 13-month construction process," said Tom Timmons, president and COO of Wild Rose Jefferson.  "We continue to be honored by the work and efforts of the people of Greene County, and we're excited to see this project moving forward."

WHAT:         Ceremonial ground breaking for Wild Rose Jefferson.

WHERE:       Wild Rose Jefferson site:  Northwest corner of U.S. Highway 30 and Iowa Highway 4.

WHEN:          Thursday, July 10, 2014, at 1 p.m.

FEATURED:   Speakers include dignitaries representing local, regional and state entities and governments.

Wild Rose Jefferson is expected to open in late summer 2015.  The Greene County project, which includes a casino, hotel and events center, will add 275 jobs as well as payroll and benefits of $7 million annually to the local economy.

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For more information, contact: 

Jamie Buelt, spokesperson

515-249-1857 · 360-961-0096

jbuelt@enQstrategies.com

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Wild Rose Jefferson Receives License
Thursday, June 12, 2014
Press Releases
Iowa Racing & Gaming Commission Grants License
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IRGC Approves License for Greene County Casino

BURLINGTON, Iowa (June 12, 2014) — The Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission today awarded a license for the Greene County casino proposed by Wild Rose Jefferson and Grow Greene County Gaming Corp. The commission approved the license with a 3-to-2 vote.

“We are very appreciative of the vote today. We know that the commissioners take great care and effort in making these decisions, and we thank each of them for their commitment to the process,” said Tom Timmons, president and chief operating officer of Wild Rose Entertainment.  “Our application was as compelling as any I have ever seen in my 25-plus years in the Iowa gaming industry. We offered the commission all of the things they look for in a license applicant:  the integrity of our existing operations, overwhelming local support, regional support from contiguous counties and the preservation of stability in the industry.”

Wild Rose has been working with city and county officials in Greene County over the past several months in preparation for the IRGC decision. Company officials expect to start the construction process immediately with an official groundbreaking being held within the next 30 days.

“To say that we are thrilled with this decision is an understatement,” said Peg Raney, secretary of the Grow Greene County Gaming Corp. “So many facets of our community came together to make this possible, and we needed every single one of them—the business community, young people, retirees, volunteers, elected officials and our neighbors in surrounding counties. This project has unified a variety of interests because we all share the vision and mission of helping Greene County and this region to grow in the future.”

The company is constructing a $40-million gaming resort and entertainment venue in Jefferson at the northwest corner of U.S. Highway 30 and Iowa Highway 4. In addition to the 18,000-square-foot casino with approximately 525 slot machines and 14 table games, the entertainment resort will feature: an events center, sports bar, restaurant and a 71-room hotel, developed by BriMark Builders, LLC.

“This is one of the biggest and best things to happen in Greene County since maybe hybrid seed corn was developed,” noted Chuck Offenburger, blogger, former Des Moines Register columnist and Greene County resident. “It’s going to have that big of an economic impact. Our people have never united and worked together on a project like they have on this one.  Having available jobs, a very comfortable lifestyle, new entertainment possibilities and new financial resources is going to jump-start population growth here – at long last.  And, I don’t think it’s going to be cannibalizing any other casino operation when it happens here.”

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Wild Rose officials estimate the company will hire 275 employees and add a payroll and benefits package to the local economy worth $7 million.  Benefits include health, dental, vision and 401(k).

Grow Greene County, the qualified sponsoring organization, has negotiated a 5-percent share of the casino’s adjusted gross receipts. In December 2013, Grow Greene County announced that it would share the estimated $1.5 million in proceeds and make up to 20 percent available to nonprofits and civic projects in its neighboring counties of Boone, Calhoun, Carroll, Dallas, Guthrie and Webster. 

“It’s going to make Greene County a more fun place to live too,” Offenburger added.

The construction process should take approximately 13 months, and Timmons says he believes the facility would be up and running for a late summer 2015 opening.

Wild Rose was founded in 2004 by Iowa businessmen Gary Kirke and Michael Richards. The company owns and operates two casinos: Wild Rose Emmetsburg and Wild Rose Clinton. Since earning its first license in 2005, the company has generated approximately $25 million for charities and community projects in Palo Alto and Clinton counties and paid more than $115 million in state and local taxes.

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Contact:  Jamie Buelt, spokesperson
                   515-249-1857

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