Years ago, many North Texans would drive to Shreveport to take their chances at casinos.
But as casinos in Oklahoma have been built in recent years, many North Texans have headed there, preferring the shorter drive.
Kathy Dececio of Azle heads to WinStar, off Interstate 35 in Thackerville, which has a 500,000-square-foot gaming floor with eight themed gaming plazas, table games, bingo, keno and off-track betting.
Dececio and her husband, Frank, go to the casino once every couple of months and say they'd gladly give their business to casinos in Texas -- if that ever became an option.
"We certainly wouldn't come here so much," she said.
WinStar is owned by the Chickasaw Nation, which also owns other casinos along I-35 in Oklahoma as well as businesses including smoke shops, bingo halls, truck stations, radio stations -- and Lone Star Park in Grand Prairie.
It isn't the only group with ties to casinos to put roots down in Texas.
Las Vegas-based Pinnacle Entertainment has been given the go-ahead to buy into the racing interest at the Retama Park racetrack in San Antonio. And Pennsylvania-based Penn National Gaming plays a key role in running the Sam Houston Race Park in Houston and the Valley Race Park in Harlingen, as it will at a racetrack planned in Laredo.
WinStar has grown through the years, adding more square footage to its casino, not to mention a spa, shops, an inn, a 27-hole golf course, a variety of eateries and a 2,500-seat Global Events Center, which has recently presented performers including Matchbox 20 and Diana Ross.
When looking at ongoing expansion and construction at the casino recently, Dean, of Denton, just smiled.
"Texans are building this," she said with a shrug.