Hard Rock Casino Rockford’s interim casino reaped 11% more revenue through the first four months of 2024, according to data from the Illinois Gaming Board. (Photo provided by Hard Rock Casino Rockford)
By Kevin Haas
Rock River Current
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ROCKFORD — Hard Rock Casino Rockford’s revenue from gambling has increased 11% through the first four months of the year, according to new data from the Illinois Gaming Board.

The casino’s first four months of 2024 included a record $6.58 million from gamblers in March, followed by $6.24 million in April. Gamblers lost a total $24.6 million through April, up from $22.2 million a year ago and $16.8 million in 2022.

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The casino’s growth so far this year comes after its revenue increased by 26% in 2023, the largest revenue growth of any casino in the state both by percentage and total dollar amount. The casino brought in $69.1 million from gamblers in 2023, generating more than $4 million in local taxes.


Gambling revenue through the first four months of 2024 has generated about $1.4 million in local taxes so far this year. That money is shared by Rockford, Loves Park, Machesney Park and Winnebago County government. Rockford gets the lion’s share with 70% of the local tax funds while Winnebago County receives 20% and Loves Park and Machesney Park share 5% each.

Rockford uses its portion of the proceeds to contribute $1.5 million annually to Rockford Promise, a nonprofit that provides free college tuition for qualified students to attend Northern Illinois University. Any revenue above $1.5 million goes into the general operating fund.

Admissions into the casino are also up so far this year, with more than 206,000 through April, about 10,000 more than at this point last year.

A Hard Rock Opening Act, the name for the temporary casino that filled the former Giovanni’s Restaurant and Convention Center, opened Nov. 10, 2021. It’s expected to be in its final four months of operation as Hard Rock has targeted a grand opening of its full casino at 7801 E. State St. around Labor Day weekend.

Editor’s note: This story has been updated from its original version to correct the amount of local tax revenue generated so far in 2024: $1,438,670.

This article is by Kevin Haas. Email him at khaas@rockrivercurrent.com or follow him on X at @KevinMHaas or Instagram @thekevinhaas and Threads @thekevinhaas

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