Casino Night Fundraiser

Are you in the process of planning a casino night fundraiser? Are you trying to raise money for a great cause? We are here to help with the best casino night fundraiser ideas Chicago has to offer.

The GSH Casino Parties team has over 20 years of fundraising and event planning experience. We have learned all there is to know about casino themed parties and charitable gaming events. We want to share our knowledge and experience with you so you can plan and execute a memorable casino night fundraiser.

Casino Themed Party vs. Charitable Gaming

We would like to share with you a list of the pros and cons so you can determine the best route for your casino night fundraiser.

Charitable Gaming – Pros

  • Make money through door, and extra money through re-buys.
  • People pay money for chips.
  • Draw large crowds due to gambling aspect.

Charitable Gaming – Cons

  • Charitable Organization (CO), Venue (provider), and Casino Supplier (CS) all must be licensed through the State of IL.
  • If Venue is not licensed, they may force CO to pay for temporary license.
  • Must provide volunteers to deal gaming tables (typically 2 for each game is recommended).
  • It is illegal for CS to provide you any insight on the planning for your night. They cannot give you recommendations, consultations, or advice in any way. They also cannot help promote your event in any way, nor can they assist you during an event in any way.
  • If guests have the opportunity to cash out, you run the risk of a big winner, which takes money away from the charity.  The worst case scenario would be that the charity loses money on the entire event. People always say, “The House always wins.” That is only the case when the house never closes and deals millions of hands.  If you have a casino with a limited time (3-6 hours), the house can definitely lose!
  • State Officials have the right to show up to your event at any given time. If they find that anything is out of place or any rules/laws are being broken, fines will be assessed to all parties affiliated and licenses will be revoked permanently.

Casino Themed Party – Pros

  • No license needed for any group (CO, Provider, CS).
  • No pressure on volunteers to learn, deal games, and show up to the event.
  • Have a professional staff that are there to entertain, teach, and engage with guests.
  • CS can help provide assistance in your planning phase with venues, catering, raffle prizes, etc.
  • All parties can promote your event via social media.
  • Guests have the opportunity to win prizes.

Casino Themed Party – Cons

  • No opportunity to earn extra money through casino. Anyone that pays to get through the door gets to play casino games for free.
  • Costs are higher due to paying for dealer/entertainer staff.

As always, we here at GSH Casino Parties like to provide you with as much information as possible. Visit the Illinois Dept. of Revenue for the information you will need regarding a charitable fundraising event.

Licensed Charitable Gaming FAQ’s

    What is a Charitable Gaming Event?

    A Charitable Gaming Event, or Casino Fundraiser, is a themed event where the charitable organization is using the Casino Night experiance/theme in order to help raise money, whether indirectly or directly through the casino.

    Am I allowed to host a Casino Fundraiser/ Is it legal?

    Yes, anyone that applies for, and obtains a Charitable Gambing License is allowed to host a casino fundraiser. Otherwise it is Illegal to require someone to pay in order to play the games.

    Where do I apply for the Charitable Gaming License (CCL)?

    You may apply for a CCL through the IL Department of Revenue. You will need to fill out Form RCG-1 and send it to the IL Dept of Rev. You will need to provide GSH Casino Parties license number as well, which we will provide you. It normally takes about a month to get approved and costs $400. Once approved for the license, it is good for 2 years or up to 4 uses, whichever comes first.

    How does a Casino Fundraiser work?

    There are multiple ways a Casino Fundraiser can work. The most common way is to set up a bank area where people can purchase fun money chips in order to play the games. We recommend setting up tiered packages where guests can purchase chips. For example
    $20 gets you $200 in chips.
    $40 gets you $500 in chips
    $100 gets you $2,000 in chips

    We recommend the organization provide a few prizes. This typically incentivizes the guests to purchase additional chips. At the end of the night the players will convert their chips into raffle tickets and try to win the casino prizes.

    Can we provide our professional dealers for your event?

    GSH Casino cannot use our paid professional dealers for your Casino Fundraiser; all dealers must be volunteers. The Charitable organization is encouraged to provide as many volunteers as they can. GSH will also help train volunteers prior to the event. In some instances If you are unable to attract volunteer dealers GSH can help locate some in your event area.

    How much money can we make from a Casino Fundraiser?

    How much money you can raise is dependent on multiple factors. They include who you invite, how many guests attend, admission charge, and many more. Every casino fundraiser is different. We advise our clients to recoup some of their costs through admission ticket sales, Casino Purchases, Silent Auctions, donations and any other fundraising methods you see fit.

    Does my venue need to do anything for a Casino Fundraiser?

    Yes, your venue also needs to be licensed in order to host casino fundraisers in their space. They would need to obtain a provider’s license (form RB-30) through the Department of Revenue. Oftentimes if the venue is not licensed, they may pass on that cost to the customer (the providers license cost is $50).

    Please do not hesitate to call us if you have any questions or concerns regarding your event. We are here to help you, your staff, and your organization.