Screenshot from

# # #

Below is a press release from Bear River Casino and Resort. Before publishing it, we spoke briefly with Kayla Corder, the tribe’s casino’s director of marketing, and asked her about this decision in light of Humboldt County Public Health Officer Dr. Teresa Frankovich’s comments earlier today, warning that it’s too early to safely reopen casinos. Corder said she had no comment.

[A belated point of clarification, here: The Bear River Band of the Rohnerville Rancheria is a sovereign government and thus not bound by the county’s shelter-in-place order.]

Here’s the press release:


  • New Hours of Operation: 9 a.m.-5 a.m. DAILY *Closed from 5 a.m.-9 a.m. to allow for extensive deep cleaning
  • Property to Reopen in Phases with Aggressive Health and Sanitation program
  • 100% Smoke Free Environment
  • Operating at 30% Maximum Capacity

LOLETA / CA – MAY 14, 2020: Bear River Casino Resort is excited to announce we are reopening our doors on Sunday, May 24th. Since our temporary closure on March 17th due to COVID-19, we have been deep cleaning the property, installing new safety features and planning for the health and safety of guests, employees and Tribal Members.

The property will reopen in phases. Select gaming machines, food and beverage offerings and amenities may be closed initially. Bear River plans to reevaluate and make adjustments as necessary during the reopening phases.

During phase one, the Express Café and Rivers Edge Restaurant will be open with to-go orders, sit-down dining service, once opened, there will be limited seating to allow for social distancing between guests. There will be changes to the menus and dining special offerings and alcohol will be unavailable for the first week, at minimum. The Thirsty Bear Lounge will remain closed.

To allow for social distancing, every other slot machine will be turned off and table games will have a limited number of players per table. All gaming areas, slot machines and table games will be cleaned frequently. Poker will remain closed in the initial phase and will reopen at a later date to be determined.

Hotel service and guest amenities will be limited. Valet, room service, fitness center and pool will remain closed in the initial phase. High-contact areas including elevators, door handles and lobby areas will be frequently cleaned and maintained.

As part of an extensive and aggressive health and sanitation program, Bear River has developed several new initiatives such as the use of a self-cleaning antimicrobial coating throughout the property, non-invasive temperature checks at entrances, social distancing practices by use of floor decals, additional cleaning protocols, plexiglass shields, personal protective equipment (PPE), comprehensive team member training, safety and hygiene signage, and several other procedures throughout the property to ensure a safer environment.

We will limit capacity to 30% to further ensure safe distancing. Smoking will be prohibited initially. Guests will be also be required to wear masks while on-property.

Bear River has always taken great pride in maintaining a clean and fun environment and will continue these higher standards and increased cleaning measures moving forward to ensure the health and safety of our guests, team members and community.