Margaritaville & Free Concert Helping To Restore The Shore - KMSP-TV

Margaritaville & Free Concert Helping To Restore The Shore

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ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. -

"We're glad to help. The best thing we did was build this thing (Margaritaville)  in Atlantic City," Jimmy Buffet took the stage with those words, then started belting out his famous tunes, christening his new Margaritaville at Resorts Casino.

The thousands of screaming fans is music to the ears of Resorts Casino CEO Mark Giannantonio.

"We are overjoyed here today."

Especially since the resorts latest gamble to attract more than convenience gamblers---appears to be paying off. The 35-year-old hotel underwent a $70-million dollar facelift. That includes $35 million used to build Landshark Beach and Jimmy Buffet's Margaritaville. His parrothead faithful are flocking to Atlantic City attraction that opened Memorial Day.

"I'm from Lancaster," exclaimed Buffet fan Deb Miller. "Jimmy Buffet brought me here and I came by horse and buggy," Miller laughed.

"I  think it's fantastic the money they're spending for both family and adults finally,  as opposed to making it just casinos and gambling."

Though gaming  is still the  bread and butter for casinos in  Atlantic City, the CEO of Resorts Casino says the new Margaritaville and free concert is all part of a plan to get a wider group of people to DoAC.

"We're really doing this not just for Resorts but as I  said to jumpstart the summer season for all of Atlantic City and for all the businesses on the boardwalk."

Officials will tell you the fortunes of Atlantic City businesses and casinos are intertwined. In late May the Division of Gaming Enforcement reported  plunging first quarter operating profits for casinos. Hurricane Sandy didn't help.

Atlantic City city resorts are hoping  they'll be singing a different tune soon thanks to concerts and new amenities like Margaritaville.

Already they seem to have enticed people like Steve Stone to come from his beach community in Rehoboth to the Jersey Shore.

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