Gun Lake Casino Press Room

Your source for Gun Lake Casino's current media information. 

For more information, or to be added to our distribution list, contact our Community Relations Coordinator at 269.509.2310.

 

 

Brian johnson named gun lake casino's new vice president of finance and administration

(Wayland, Mich.) – Gun Lake Casino is proud to announce the hiring of Brian Johnson as its new Vice President of Finance and Administration. Johnson will bring almost 30 years’ worth of financial experience to the casino through his work in several roles at properties across the Midwest.

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Gun Lake Casino's outstanding team members recognized with "top gun" awards

(Wayland, Mich.) – Today, Gun Lake Casino announced it has further recognized Team Members who have distinguished themselves to casino guests and their peers with “Top Gun” awards. The Top Gun awards started ten years ago and are given to only four Team Members per quarter. Winners are nominated by their peers and recieve money and exclusive parking privileges. This further recognition awarded over 130 active Team Members who have previously won this award, with cinema tickets to see the motion picture “Top Gun”.

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lam vongsakoun named gun lake casino's new vp of hospitality

(Wayland, Mich.) – Today, Gun Lake Casino enthusiastically announced the selection of Lam Vongsakoun as its Vice President of Hospitality, a corporate leader in the casino hospitality industry who will oversee the current food & beverage operation, and future hotel expansion effective immediately.  Vongsakoun brings a wealth of experience leading culinary and hospitality teams at numerous AAA Four/Five Diamond and Forbes Five Star hotel resorts for over 25 years.

Vongsakoun’s experience includes implementing award-winning programs to run multi-faceted food and beverage operations at large gaming entertainment resorts in several states.  During his career, he has demonstrated an ability to mentor fellow team members.  He has effectively managed salary-level staff while supervising hundreds of team members.          

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gun lake casino awards team members over $750,000 in bonuses

(Wayland, Mich.) – Gun Lake Casino (GLC) announced details of its most recent distribution of team member bonuses of over $750,000. Such bonus incentive payments are regularly distributed on a quarterly basis as a means of recognizing the essential role of each team member. Since 2011, GLC has awarded over $22 million through the bonus program to its team members. Along with bonuses, GLC offers an industry leading wage and benefits package to further its commitment to being the best employer in West Michigan.

“Here at Gun Lake Casino, we have a genuine desire to care for the needs of our team members both professionally and in their personal lives,” said Sal Semola, CEO for Gun Lake Casino. “Our quarterly bonus program reflects the
appreciation we have for our team, which is so integral to our core commitment of providing the best experience for our guests. Part of our mission is also to improve the quality of life in our community.”

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Gun Lake Casino named one of West Michigan’s Best and Brightest Companies for a third straight year

(Wayland, Mich.) – For a third consecutive year, Gun Lake Casino has been named one of West Michigan’s Best and Brightest Companies to Work For by the National Association for Business Resources (NABR). The competition identifies organizations that display a commitment to excellence in communication, work-life balance, employee education, diversity, recognition, retention, and more.


“This honor means even more than ever before,” said Gun Lake Casino CEO Sal Semola, “we pride ourselves in taking care of our Team Members like our own family. It’s not just about the excellent benefits, it’s also about the great working environment and the culture that we have created, a culture that wouldn’t exist without great Team Members. Thank you to them for voting for us the third year in a row.”

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Gun Lake Casino issues $7.4 Million in Biannual Revenue Payment

(Wayland, Mich.) – Gun Lake Casino’s revenue-sharing continues to make a major impact throughout the local community and the State of Michigan. The biannual payment stemming from the period of October 1, 2021, to March 31, 2022, amounted to over $7.4 million to three different recipient entities.


The State of Michigan Strategic Fund will receive over $4.1 million which will help award grants to businesses throughout the state and create jobs. Since the first payment in 2011, Gun Lake Casino has shared over $111 million with the strategic fund.


Over $1.2 million of the recent payment will impact GLIMI, a non-gaming economic development organization with both tribe and state oversight. GLIMI has seen over $19.5 million from Gun Lake Casino to date.

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Gun Lake Casino Breaks Ground on Phase 5 Expansion

Addition to feature 15-story hotel with 32,000 square foot Aquadome

(Wayland, Mich.) – Gun Lake Casino has officially broken ground on the upcoming $300-million addition to the west side of the property. The expansion will transform the casino into a hotel resort with countless amenities.


“Phase 5 will transform the property into becoming a first-class destination resort. Without question, its design attributes will create a unique entertainment experience,” said Gun Lake Casino CEO, Sal Semola. “Over the past eleven years, the Gun Lake Tribe and our Gun Lake Casino Team Members have worked tirelessly to make this all a possibility. This is just the next step towards making our property the premier entertainment destination in the Midwest.”

The resort will feature multiple pools inside a six-story Aquadome with 32,000 square feet of space that can transform into a concert venue, banquet center and entertainment venue. The hotel will consist of 15 floors with 252 rooms including 30 suites, and a two-level suite. 350 jobs are expected to be created as part of the addition to the property.

“Job creation is one of the many things we’re excited about with this expansion,” Semola added. “We take great pride in providing career opportunities with outstanding benefits for people in our community. These jobs will include guest relations, housekeeping, entertainment, and several other departments.”

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Tom Malloy named Gun Lake Casino Vice President of Marketing

(Wayland, Mich.) – Gun Lake Casino has announced the hiring of experienced Gaming Executive Tom Malloy as the new Vice President of Marketing. With over 30 years of gaming and hospitality experience, Malloy has held several different roles at properties across the United States.


Since graduating from the University of Utah in 1992, Malloy has spent time in multiple contrasting cities and regions, from the Las Vegas strip and California, all the way to the Midwest. In that time, Malloy has overseen revenue generation, public relations, advertising, player development, hotel sales, and much more. Most recently, he served as the Assistant General Manager & Chief Marketing Officer at Potawatomi Hotel & Casino in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

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Sal Semola Promoted to CEO of Gun Lake Casino

(Wayland, Mich.) – The Match-E-Be-Nash-She-Wish Band of Pottawatomi, otherwise known as the Gun Lake Tribe, has announced the promotion of Sal Semola to CEO. Since being hired as President and COO of Gun Lake Casino in 2017, Semola has helped the property grow into a premier gaming and entertainment destination in West Michigan.

Semola guided GLC through the Phase 4 expansion which opened in September, featuring a $100-million development with three new restaurants; Shkodé Chophouse, CBK, and 131 Sportsbar & Lounge. However, the best is yet to come under his supervision, as Gun Lake Casino gets set to break ground on a nearly $300-million hotel and resort that will transform the property into the ultimate stay-and-play location.

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Gun Lake Casino hires Brett Miller as Director of Security

(Wayland, Mich.) – Gun Lake Casino is pleased to announce the addition of Brett Miller as the new Director of Security. Most recently Miller served as a security manager at Firekeepers Casino Hotel in Battle Creek where he managed over 40 security officers.

“Brett has all of the characteristics we were looking for in this role. His 13 years of experience of casino management, training, hiring and day-to-day operations make him a perfect fit for the position,” said Gun Lake Casino CEO, Sal Semola. “We’re excited to have Brett onboard as GLC continues to build towards the future.”

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Gun Lake Casino hires Endea Smith as Vice President of Human Resources

(Wayland, Mich.) – Gun Lake Casino has announced the hiring of Endea Smith for the new Vice President of Human Resources position. Smith has over 25 years of experience in the casino industry, including recently as a multi-property Vice President of Human Resources at Penn National Race Course in Grantville, Pennsylvania.

“Endea has an incredible amount of experience in the industry that makes her an obvious choice for this new role,” said Gun Lake Casino President and COO, Sal Semola. “We are confident that Endea will help uphold the unsurpassed standards that Gun Lake Casino prides itself on, especially as we continue to grow.”

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Gun Lake Casino lifts mask mandate, effective immediately

(Wayland, Mich.) – Following the updated COVID-19 numbers from the Michigan Department of Health & Human Services, Gun Lake Casino is lifting its mask mandate, effective immediately. As of February 19, Allegan County saw just a 31.2 daily new cases per 100,000, down from 182 daily new cases at the start of January.

“Health and safety of our Guests and Team Members is our number one priority,” said Gun Lake Casino President/COO, Sal Semola. “The new science and data released from our local and state health departments have been extremely encouraging. Due to that data, we feel that now is the right time to make this decision. Masks will remain highly recommended for our Guests and Team Members.”

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Gun Lake Casino Donates $13,500 to repair failing boiler at Exodus Place transitional home

(Wayland, Mich.) – With the cold winter months upon us, it’s imperative to have a good heating system in place, especially for those experiencing homelessness. Unfortunately, Exodus Place in Grand Rapids, which is Michigan’s largest men’s transitional housing facility, didn’t have that for the start of the winter season. The non-profit’s 25-year-old boiler was quickly on the decline, with three of its four heat pumps failing.

“It was getting pretty bad, especially when temperatures started dipping down into the single digits,” said Exodus Place resident, Adam. “It was a big talking point for all of us while the cold rooms were going on.”

The replacement of the heat pumps, piping and thermostat were all required for necessary heating in the facility, which was a costly fix for Exodus. However, Gun Lake Casino was quick to step in and donate $13,500 for the repairs to help keep their 135 residents warm during the winter.

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Gun Lake Casino Donates $4,000 to Allegan County Sheriff’s Department for K-9 Training

(Wayland, Mich.) – In support of Law Enforcement Appreciation Day on January 9, Gun Lake Casino is donating $4,000 to the Allegan County Sheriff’s Department to cover the cost of K-9 training. The department, which currently has four dogs, will be retiring six-year-old K9 Lajki in March due to health issues.

Additionally, two of the other three K9s are due for retirement in the next three years due to declining health. With the dire need for a quality and younger K9 within the department, the Gun Lake Casino donation will go towards training for Allegan County’s three-year-old German shepherd, Thor and his new handler, Deputy Scott Vereeke.

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Gun Lake Casino Team Member Car Giveaway

(Wayland, Mich.) – Gun Lake Casino is celebrating new, and existing team members by giving away a brand new 2022 Nissan Kicks. The casino announced today that it will host a drawing this December for all eligible team members, hired by October 1, 2021, and in good standing as of December 1, 2021.


The team member car giveaway will be held on December 8, 2021 for a brand new 2022 Nissan Kicks valued at over $20,000. The winning team member may also choose a cash option of $14,000 if they prefer. The vehicle will be provided by Cole Nissan from Kalamazoo.

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GRAND RAPIDS MUSIC VENUE TO BE RENAMED GLC LIVE AT 20 MONROE

Grand Rapids – June 24, 2021 – Live Nation today announced that Gun Lake Casino (GLC) will be the new name-in-title sponsor of the popular downtown Grand Rapids venue formerly known as 20 Monroe Live. The venue, owned and operated by Live Nation and opened in 2017, is now known as GLC Live at 20 Monroe. It is located at 11 Ottawa Ave. NW in the heart of the Social District in downtown Grand Rapids.

Since its debut in 2017, GLC Live at 20 Monroe is the state-of-the-art venue in Grand Rapids and has established itself as the home for live music, entertainment and special events in west Michigan. GLC Live at 20 Monroe accommodates nearly 2,600 patrons for live shows and can also scale down to an intimate configuration for various types of special events. Many shows at the venue feature a general admission standing floor with reserved mezzanine seating, while select events feature seating throughout. The second level features the Vanguard, a beautiful VIP club with amenities including a private bar, open air patio and access to the best seats in the house.

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GUn LakE CASINO RAISES MINIMUM STARTING WAGE TO $14 PER HOUR 

Wayland, Mich.) – Gun Lake Casino (GLC) announced a significant increase to the company’s minimum starting wage for all positions – effective June 1, 2021. For all non-tipped positions, the new $14 starting wage will increase the minimum pay by more than 30%. The starting wage of all tipped positions has been raised to $7.40 per hour plus tips.

Gun Lake Casino is a premier employer in West Michigan, proudly providing career opportunities to nearly 1,000 current team members. The casino was recently honored “West Michigan’s Best and Brightest Companies to Work For®” by the National Association for Business Resources (NABR), an award that has been received for two consecutive years.

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Gun Lake Casino Unveils New Dining Concepts

Gun Lake Casino is excited to reveal the lineup of two exquisite restaurants and a new entertainment space, included in the most recent $100 million expansion, scheduled to open at the end of summer 2021. This expansion brings the total investment into the Gun Lake Casino property to $415 million.

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Gun Lake Casino Officially Launches Play Gun Lake

(Wayland, Mich.) – Gun Lake Casino announced today the official launch of the online casino platform Play Gun Lake in the state of Michigan, powered by Parx Casino.

The partnership between Gun Lake Casino and Parx Casino was established to provide a superior online gaming experience for Gun Lake Casino guests as well as other gamblers within the state of Michigan. As part of the partnership, Parx Casino will operate and run the online casino gaming platform for Gun Lake Casino. The next phase of the partnership will include the introduction of online sports betting, which will occur at a later date.

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Gun Lake Casino Reveals Plan for $300 Million Expansion

(Wayland, Mich.) – Today, the Gun Lake Tribe and Gun Lake Casino have officially revealed new expansion plans for the casino’s property. The $300 million project will transform the current location into a hotel resort with endless amenities.

Gun Lake Casino has experienced multiple expansions since opening in 2011. This announcement continues development on the master planning and infrastructure required to create a first-class entertainment facility. Construction on Gun Lake Casino’s current expansion is slated to open at the end of summer 2021, and work on the designs for Phase 5 will begin immediately upon completion.

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Gun Lake Casino Shows Support to Vaccinated Guests and Team Members

(Wayland, Mich.) – Gun Lake Casino is showing support to those who have volunteered to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. The casino announced today that it will provide $20 in Free Slot Play to guests and thousands of dollars in prizes to team members who have been fully vaccinated.

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Josef Huber Becomes Executive Chef of Gun Lake Casino

Gun Lake Casino is excited to announce the appointment of experienced culinary artist, Josef Huber, as the new executive chef, effective immediately. Chef Huber joins Gun Lake Casino with over 40 years of culinary experience from restaurants across the world.

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Gun Lake Casino Provides a Year’s Supply of Hygiene Kits for Exodus Place

(Wayland, Mich.) – Gun Lake Casino, a proud supporter of Exodus Place, provided the funding needed to purchase a year’s supply of hygiene kits for men facing homelessness in the Grand Rapids area.

“Gun Lake Casino recognizes that vital organizations, like Exodus Place, have experienced a loss of funding for critical care donations due to the Coronavirus pandemic,” stated Sal Semola, president and chief operating officer of Gun Lake Casino. “We are proud to support Exodus Place and their mission of empowering men and providing the tools needed to overcome homelessness. We sincerely hope that our donation contributes to the success of many. ”

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Gun Lake Casino guest wins jackpot of $288,443.30 while playing Blackjack

(Wayland, Mich.) – One lucky Gun Lake Casino table games player had much to celebrate early Wednesday morning. Thanks to this historical win, the guest is going home with pockets full of cash.

The winning local guest, who wishes to remain anonymous, had an exact match while playing blackjack with Ace King versus Ace King and both suited spades. This lucky hand resulted in a $288,443.30 progressive jackpot payout.

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Gun Lake Casino Provides Valentine’s Day Meals for Dégagé Ministries

Gun Lake Casino, a supporter of Dégagé Ministries since 2011, provided hundreds of meals to feed those in need in celebration of Valentine’s Day. The meals are to be served throughout the day on Friday, February 12.

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Gun Lake Casino Celebrates 10-Year Anniversary Milestone

(Bradley, Mich.) – Today, the Gun Lake Tribe (Tribe) announced the ten-year anniversary of the Gun Lake Casino (Casino). The Tribe released findings of a new economic impact report dating back to the Casino’s public opening on February 10, 2011. To date, the Tribe has invested $415 million into the Casino, while directly paying $502 million in wages. In total, the Casino generated $2.8 billion to Michigan’s economy in the last ten years.

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Gun Lake Casino Celebrating Ten Years in the West Michigan Community

(Wayland, Mich.) – February 10, 2021 marks the 10th anniversary for Gun Lake Casino, a premiere entertainment and dining destination in Michigan. The casino has grown throughout the past decade, standing out with a respectful reputation in the casino industry.

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Gun Lake Casino Provides $639,000 in Bonuses to Team Members

Gun Lake Casino (GLC), announced it has distributed over $639,000 in quarterly incentives to team members in January, a token of gratitude for the effort each team member has played in making Gun Lake Casino the best location to work for in West Michigan. Since 2011, GLC has rewarded over $17.2 million through the quarterly bonus program to its team members. 

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$22,656.04