Ameristar closes S. Washington Shell

Published 12:00 am Saturday, December 12, 2015

A few cars occupied parking spaces of the once busy Ameristar Shell convenience store on South Washington Street this week.

A sign on the door said “closed to the public” and once busy gasoline pumps shut off with their nozzles covered.

Ameristar Casino, which owns the station north of the Mississippi State Welcome Center for five years, closed the station Dec. 3.

Email newsletter signup

Sign up for The Vicksburg Post's free newsletters

Check which newsletters you would like to receive
  • Vicksburg News: Sent daily at 5 am
  • Vicksburg Sports: Sent daily at 10 am

Ameristar is expected to raze the building in the near future.

“It was business decision to close it, and we’re continuing to look for other opportunities to develop that area,” Ameristar general manager Gerad Hardy said. “We will demolish it and turn it into a green field. We think it’s a great area and we’ll look for other opportunities in the future to do potential development.”

Opened in 1994, Ameristar is the largest of the city’s four casinos and the seventh largest casino in the state and employs 672 people, according to a quarterly report filed in September with the Mississippi Gaming Commission.

It was acquired by Pinnacle Gaming in August 2013.

The casino extends over 70,000 square feet and over 1,500 slot machines, 27 table games and 10 poker tables. The Bottleneck Blues Bar offers entertainment in a Delta-style blues club environment.

The property also offers a 149-room deluxe hotel and a variety of dining choices, including Bourbon’s BBQ and Steakhouse, Bella’s Bakery and Cafe and the Heritage Buffet.

About John Surratt

John Surratt is a graduate of Louisiana State University with a degree in general studies. He has worked as an editor, reporter and photographer for newspapers in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. He has been a member of The Vicksburg Post staff since 2011 and covers city government. He and his wife attend St. Paul Catholic Church and he is a member of the Port City Kiwanis Club.

email author More by John