Oxford Casino on Route 26. Russ Dillingham/Sun Journal 2019 photo

OXFORD — Oxford Casino Hotel announced Monday that it has suspended operations until further notice amid increasing incidents of coronavirus cases spreading across Maine. A notice posted on their website said that employees will continued to be paid for the next two weeks while the business is closed.

Advertising/Public Relations Coordinator Jane Hoyt said the company would have no further comment.

Even before its decision to close, the casino had announced that it would waive all fees associated with the cancellation or rescheduling hotel reservations for all stays through April 30.

Oxford Casino Hotel is owned by Churchill Downs Incorporated of Lousiville, Kentucky. It owns owns 13 casinos and racetracks in 11 states, including the famed Kentucky Derby, a variety of online wagering, video poker and off-track betting divisions, and supporting data and telecommunications companies.

CDI has also cancelled the Kentucky Derby. It is rescheduled to run on Sept. 5.

In Bangor, Hollywood Casino shut its doors at 6 p.m. Monday. The company had no further comment, referring inquiries to a news release posted on its website at hollywoodcasinobangor.com.

The release indicated the casino would close for two weeks and that its 325 employees would continue to be paid during that period. By Wednesday the notice was revised to say the casino would be closed until further notice. All perishable food items are being donated to the Good Shepherd Food Bank of Maine.

Gaming sites across the country have temporarily closed as the COVID-19 spreads and the Center for Disease Control and other federal and state agencies have recommended or instituted restrictions of large gatherings. The Illinois Gaming Board has gone as far as ordering all 10 of that state’s casinos to close.

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