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Casino near Iowa border hopes to draw Minnesotans to FanDuel sportsbook

Diamond Jo Casino is about a 90-minute drive from the Twin Cities.

Iowa became the first Midwestern state to legalize sports betting on August 15, and now the casino closest to Minnesota's border has opened a sportsbook that will undoubtedly be a marquee attraction for Minnesotans looking to bet. 

The FanDuel Sportsbook at Diamond Jo Casino opened Thursday, with Vikings Hall of Fame defensive tackle John Randle making the first official bet. Randle was part of the ribbon-cutting ceremony and placed a $93 bet – his jersey number – on the Twins to beat the White Sox, which wound up being a winning bet.

"The FanDuel Sportsbook features three betting windows, five video displays including a large video wall, 11 self-service betting kiosks from IGTPlayDigital and one sports ticker," Diamond Jo Casino announced. 

The casino added that it "offers bets on all major U.S. sports, including baseball, soccer, football, basketball, golf, boxing, motorsports racing, and more." 

Sports wagering has not been legalized in Minnesota, but Diamond Jo Casino is just miles from the Minnesota-Iowa border and is located off of Interstate 35. It's a 15-minute drive from Albert Lea, and only a little more than 90 minutes from Minneapolis (112 miles). 

"We are surely your kind of place for everyone in northern Iowa and southern Minnesota," Diamond Jo General Manager Scott Smith said during Thursday's ceremony

As KTTC out of Rochester reports, there will soon be a mobile app that'll allow wagering outside the casino, but you will still have to be in Iowa to place a bet. 

Here's more information from Legal Sports Report about how to place bets in Iowa. 

"The law requires new bettors to visit the licensing property to establish an account in person prior to placing a wager. Although the exact process may vary from casino to casino, it will always include some form of identity verification. This temporary inconvenience will remain in effect through 2020, after which registration will be available entirely online."

So in a nutshell, if you live in Minnesota and are 21 or older and want to place a wager, you can drive to Diamond Jo or any other Iowa casino with a sportsbook and register. Then you can place bets at the sportsbook in person, or wait for the corresponding mobile app to become available. 

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