South Dakota is among the numerous states that are implementing measures to potentially legalize sports wagering. It is noteworthy that, despite the state’s relatively small population, voters have been remarkably receptive to amending wagering laws over the past half-century. A recently enacted bill in the House would have expanded sports wagering from horse racing to professional and collegiate sports; however, it was not approved by the Senate. Many believe that it will be quite some time before online sports wagering is legalized in South Dakota, even if it were, because some view it as a threat to the state’s popular charity gambling. This article will explore the correlation between South Dakota’s fondness for sports and its history of wagering.
Legislation Regarding Gambling in South Dakota
One might be excuse for disregarding South Dakota as a feasible wagering destination, given its moribund tourism industry and demographic of approximately 800,000 inhabitants. However, South Dakota has garnered a considerable reputation for its permissive stance towards wagering. Offering thirty legitimate gaming establishments, such as charity gaming houses, racetracks, and tribal casinos, residents and guests are presented with an abundance of wagering options. However, it is important to note that there is still considerable progress to be made regarding online gambling, as off-site wagering is currently restricted to horse and greyhound racing. No commercial casinos are located within the province.
Sporting Favorites in South Dakota
Despite the absence of major professional sports teams in South Dakota at present, the state boasts a robust collegiate and high school sports culture that captivates devoted and enthusiastic spectators. South Dakotans are presented with an extensive array of athletics throughout the year, including hunter-spirit fishing and hunting, basketball, football, baseball, and track. The significance of three South Dakota favored sports teams to the Peace Garden State is elaborated upon in the following section.
The Regional Origins of Sports Betting
Although South Dakota was a relative latecomer to gambling legislation, it has spent the last four decades catching up in comparison to many other states in the United States. Since 1987, when pair-mutuul wagering on horse racing was legalized on racetracks, other forms of gambling have been permitted over the years. Legislators have attempted, but been unable to succeed, in constructing additional tracks and racinactuaos in a state with only two live horse racing tracks. Recent legislation pertaining to sports wagering in South Dakota, while successfully ratified in the lower House, encountered opposition in the Senate. Legally, mobile and online wagering would have been prohibited. More news and details can be found on the North Dakota wagering page.