Colorado, also known as the Centennial State, has one of the most varied gambling markets in the US. Although the state has yet to legalize online gambling, Colorado has authorized a variety of other regulated gambling markets which residents can take part in. Following the repeal of the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) in 2018, Colorado’s lawmakers were quite slow to explore the legalization of sports betting. So where does the state stand on sports betting? Let’s take a look.

Is it legal to bet on sports in Colorado?

No. At the moment, betting on professional and collegiate sporting events in Colorado is prohibited by state law. However, residents can bet on horse racing events at Arapahoe Park in Aurora, Colorado’s only horse racing track, or at one of the state’s 10 off-track betting facilities. Bettors can also wager on horse and dog racing online at pari-mutuel betting sites such as BetAmerica and TVG.

However, Colorado lawmakers have introduced a piece of legislation that would allow Colorado to take the next step towards legal sports betting. The bill, HB 19-1327 was introduced on 18 April 2019, two weeks before the legislative session is scheduled to end on 3 May 2019.

The bill will not legalize sports betting, instead, it will allow Colorado’s voters will have the opportunity to vote whether to authorize sports betting. Because Colorado is a Taxpayer Bill of Rights state, any legislation that would introduce a new tax rate requires voter approval via a referendum. Although the bill doesn’t propose a date for a vote, the Centennial State could vote on sports betting in November 2019 when a general election is set to take place.

Although Colorado left it very late to introduce legislation, the bill contains provisions that would legalize in-person, online and mobile sports betting in the state. If the bill is signed into law and receives voter approval, it would take effect from 1 May 2020.

Where will I be able to place bets on sporting events in Colorado?

If the sports betting bill is successful, residents would be able to place sports bets in person at licensed venues in the state. Punters would also be able to place bets via sports betting sites and mobile apps. The proposed legislation states that a limited number of licenses will be available but does not mention a specific number.

What sports will I be able to bet on?

If Colorado does legalize sports betting, residents can expect to be able to bet on a variety of professional sporting events including NFL, NBA, NHL and MLB games, as well as collegiate sporting events.

What else can I bet on in Colorado?

Even if Colorado doesn’t legalize sports betting, there are still several gambling activities that residents and visitors can participate in. In the absence of legal sports betting, sports fans can participate in daily fantasy sports betting games which were legalized in 2016.

Punters can also try their luck on games offered by the state lottery which include a variety of games such as Pick 3 and Cash 5, as well as multi-state drawings. Charitable gambling, in the form of bingo and raffles, is another form of legal gambling on offer in Colorado.

Colorado allows the Ute Tribe of Colorado to operate two tribal casinos on tribal lands in the southwest portion of the state. Coloradoans can also visit one of the state’s 38 commercial casinos. These venues offer a variety of gambling activities which include:

  •    Slots
  •    Poker
  •    Blackjack
  •    Bingo
  •    Keno
  •    Roulette
  •    Craps

These are the two tribal casinos that operate in Colorado:

Name Location Contact Email Opening Times
Ute Mountain Casino Hotel 3 Weeminuche Dr, Towaoc, CO 81334, USA +1 970-565-8800 info@utemountaincasino.com 24 hours
Sky Ute Casino Resort 14324 CO-172, Ignacio, CO 81137, USA +1 970-563-7777 Online form 24 hours

 

Here are the state’s commercial casinos:

 

Name Location Contact Email Opening Times
Ameristar Casino Resort Spa 111 Richman St, Black Hawk, CO 80422, USA  +1 720-946-4000  Not available  24 hours
Bull Durham Saloon & Casino 110 Main St, Black Hawk, CO 80422, USA   +1 303-582-0810 marketing@bulldurhamcasino.com Sunday – Thursday 8am – 2am

Friday-Saturday 8am – 4am

Gilpin Hotel Casino 111 Main Street

Black Hawk, CO 80422, USA

 +1 303-582-1133 bwhite@bhwk.com  24 hours
Golden Gates Casino 261 Main St, Black Hawk, CO 80422, USA  +1 303-582-1650  Online form  24 hours
Golden Gulch Casino 321 Main St, Black Hawk, CO 80422, USA  +1 303-582-5600   Online form Monday – Thursday 10am – 9pm

Friday- Saturday 10am – 2am

Golden Mardi Gras Casino  300 Main St, Black Hawk, CO 80422, USA  +1 303-582-5600   Online form Thursday – Monday 24 hours

Tuesday – Wednesday 8am-1am

Isle Casino Hotel Black Hawk  401 Main St, Black Hawk, CO 80422, USA  +1 800-843-4753  Not available  24 hours
Lady Luck Casino Black Hawk 340 Main St, Black Hawk, CO 80422, USA +1 610-241-1610  Not available  24 hour s
The Lodge Casino  240 Main St, Black Hawk, CO 80422, USA  +1 303-582-1771 jgarcia@bhwk.com  24 hours
 Monarch Casino Black Hawk  488 Main St, Black Hawk, CO 80422, USA  +1 303-582-1000 Online form  24 hours
 Red Dolly Casino  530 Gregory St, Black Hawk, CO 80422, USA  +1 303-582-1100  Online form  Monday -Sunday 8am – 2am
 Saratoga Casino Black Hawk  101 Main St, Black Hawk, CO 80422, USA  +1 303-582-6100 info@saratogacasinoBH.com Sunday – Wednesday 9am -3am

Thursday 9am -12am

Friday – Saturday 24 hours

 Sasquatch Casino  125 Gregory St, Black Hawk, CO 80422, USA  +1 720-880-1616  Not available  Monday -Sunday 8am – 2am
 The Wild Card Saloon  120 Main St, Black Hawk, CO 80422, USA  +1 303-582-3412  Not available  Monday – Wednesday 8am – 2am

Thursday – Sunday 8am – 4am

 Z Casino  101 Gregory St, Black Hawk, CO 80422, USA  +1 303-271-2500  Online form  Monday – Wednesday 8am – 3am

Thursday 8am – 12am

Friday – Saturday 24 hours

Sunday 12-3am, 8am -3am

 Century Casino & Hotel Central City  102 Main St, Central City, CO 80427, USA  +1 303-582-5050 info.centralcity@cnty.com  24 hours
 Dostal Alley Casino & Brew Pub  116 Main St, Central City, CO 80427, USA  +1 303-582-5563  Online form  Monday -Sunday 10am – 2am
 Easy Street Casino  120 Main St, Central City, CO 80427, USA +1 303-582-5914  Online form  Monday -Sunday 8am – 2am
 The Famous Bonanza Casino  107 Main St, Central City, CO 80427, USA  +1 303-582-5914  Online form  Sunday – Thursday 8am – 2am

Friday – Saturday 8am – 3am

 Grand Z Casino Hotel  321 Gregory St, Central City, CO 80427, USA  +1 303-582-0800  Online form  24 hours
 Johnny Zs Casino  132 Lawrence St, Central City, CO 80427, USA  +1 303-582-5623  Online form  Monday – Wednesday 8am – 3am

Thursday 8am – 12am

Friday – Sunday 24 hours

 Bronco Billy’s Casino  233 E Bennett Ave, Cripple Creek, CO 80813, USA  +1 719-689-2142  Online form  24 hours
 The Brass Ass Casino  264 E Bennett Ave, Cripple Creek, CO 80813, USA  +1 719-689-2104  Online form  24 hours
 Century Casino & Hotel Cripple Creek  200 Bennett Ave, Cripple Creek, CO 80813, USA +1 719-689-0333  info.cripplecreek@cnty.com  24 hours
 Christmas Casino and Inn at Bronco Billy’s  279 E Bennett Ave, Cripple Creek, CO 80813, USA  +1 719-689-2142  Not available Not available
 Colorado Grande Casino  300 E Bennett Ave, Cripple Creek, CO 80813, USA  +1 719-689-3517  cgcasinohotel@gmail.com  24 hours
 Double Eagle Hotel & Casino  442 E Bennett Ave, Cripple Creek, CO 80813, USA  +1 719-689-5000  Online form  24 hours
 Johnny Nolon’s Casino  301 E Bennett Ave, Cripple Creek, CO 80813, USA  +1 719-689-2080  Not available  24 hours
 McGills Hotel and Casino  232 Bennett Ave, Cripple Creek, CO 80813, USA  +1 719-689-2446  Online form  24 hours
 Midnight Rose Hotel & Casino  256 E Bennett Ave, Cripple Creek, CO 80813, USA  +1 719-689-0303  Online form  24 hours
 Wildwood Casino  119 N Fifth St, Cripple Creek, CO 80813, USA  +1 719-244-9700  Not available  24 hours

Are offshore gambling sites legal in Colorado?

As online gambling has yet to be legalized in Colorado, offshore gambling sites should also be considered illegal. Regardless of its legal status, we recommend steering clear of offshore gambling sites as they do not hold a license to serve customers in Colorado and are therefore unregulated.

As these sites aren’t regulated, they are not bound by the same regulatory standards as Colorado’s gambling industry and therefore are not required to implement basic player protection measures.  On top of this, when you deposit money into an account with an offshore there is no way of telling who is handling your cash and if anything goes wrong there would be a very small chance of recovering your funds.

You can spot offshore gambling sites by looking at the website’s domain name – domains ending in .EU or .AG aren’t licensed to operate in Colorado.

Will it be safe to bet on sports in Colorado?

If Colorado does legalize sports betting, the activity will be closely regulated by a new Gaming Control Commission that would be created to monitor sports betting operations in the state.

However, even with a dedicated regulatory body, it is still up to the individual betting on sports to ensure they are gambling responsibly, and not wagering more than they can afford to. If you feel like your gambling habits are getting out of control or you may be developing a gambling problem, there are several resources available to help you. The National Council on Problem Gambling operates the national problem gambling helpline and offers a variety of screening tools and educational resources. Colorado’s residents also have access to resources from the Problem Gambling Coalition of Colorado, a non-profit organization that aims to spread awareness of problem gambling and advocate treatment.

You can contact the National Problem Gambling Helpline via:

Call: +1-800-522-4700

Text: +1-800-522-4700

Live Chat

Who regulates gambling in Colorado?

The Division of Gaming with the Colorado Department of Revenue is charged with the regulatory oversight of gambling in the state. The state’s horse racing industry, on the other hand, is overseen by the Colorado Racing Commission. If the state legalizes sports betting a new regulatory body will be created to oversee the activity.

How old do I have to be to gamble in Colorado?

The minimum age to play bingo and the state lottery in Colorado is 18 years old. If you wish to bet on horses or gamble at a casino, you will need to be at least 21 years old.

The journey to legal and regulated sports betting in Colorado

1822 – The very first casino in Colorado opened for business.

1918 – Colorado’s laws were adjusted and almost every form of gambling was outlawed.

1983 – The Colorado Lottery officially launched. Initially, the lottery only offered scratch card games but on 23 April the lottery held its first draw.

1988 – Congress passed the Indian Gaming Regulation Act (IGRA), establishing rules and regulations for tribal gaming operations.

1991 – Colorado legalized casino gambling in three cities, Cripple Creek, Black Hawk and Central City. The maximum stake allowed on a bet was $5 and the only games authorized were slots, blackjack and poker.

1992 – Congress passed the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) placing a federal ban on sports betting across the nation. Oregon, Nevada, Delaware and Montana were granted a partial exemption from PASPA, as these states already had laws in place for legal sports betting.

1995 – The state of Colorado entered the first tribe-state compact for gambling.

2001 – The Colorado Lottery added Powerball to its list of games.

2008 – Gambling laws were expanded. Amendment 50, an amendment that would allow Colorado’s casinos to operate 24 hours 7 days a week, raise the maximum stake at casinos from $5 to $100 and also legalize craps and roulette was passed.

2009 – The Colorado Lottery added Mega Millions to its list of games.

2018 – On 14 May, the Supreme Court reached a decision in the legal battle between New Jersey and the US sports leagues. In a seven to two vote, it was agreed that one of the clauses in PASPA violated the Tenth Amendment, as it commandeered power from states to regulate their own gambling industries. This paved the way for all US states to decide whether or not sports betting should be legalized. In the weeks after the repeal of PASPA, a number of US sportsbooks launched across the country.

2019 – On 18 April, towards the end of the 2019 legislative session, lawmakers introduced HB 19-1327, a bill that would legalize land-based, online and mobile sports betting within the state of Colorado.

Lawmakers are currently considering sports betting legislation in Colorado. The legislative session is due to end on 3 May 2019 which means there is a possibility that Colorado could legalize sports betting in 2019.

Check back with BettingUS for more updates on sports betting in Colorado.