LEMOORE – The Tachi Yokut tribe held a groundbreaking ceremony Thursday for a planned entertainment complex at Tachi Palace Hotel & Casino, which will feature a movie theater, bowling alley, billiards room, arcade, and concourse, bar and concessions.

“We are excited to be adding even more amenities to the Tachi Palace Hotel and Casino,” Ruben Barrios, chairman of the Tachi Yokut Tribe, said in a released statement. “With the addition of the entertainment complex, this will be a true family-friendly place for everyone to enjoy.”

Hundreds of people gathered in the north parking lot of the casino Thursday, located at 17225 Jersey Ave. in Lemoore, to celebrate the groundbreaking. Along with food and drinks, there were songs performed by the Tachi Yokut Native American H.O.O.P.S. club and a spiritual drum group.

The tribe’s spiritual leader, Mike Sisco, performed a smudging of the area and a blessing, and gave thanks for the new endeavor the tribe is about to start.

On behalf of the tribal council and elders, Willie Barrios, the casino’s general manager, thanked all those in attendance. He said the new complex meant more jobs and more families being able to enjoy themselves at Tachi Palace.

Local officials showed up to the groundbreaking, including Kings County Supervisor Joe Neves, Lemoore City Councilman Eddie Neal and representatives from the Lemoore Chamber of Commerce.

Representatives from Congressman David Valadao’s and Senator Andy Vidak’s offices were also in attendance at the event. Weston Anderson, district representative for Vidak’s office, gave the tribe a certificate of recognition and said the senator looked forward to seeing the new complex.

Adam Mays, president of AR Mays Construction, addressed the crowd and thanked the tribe for trusting his company to build the new complex. He said he was honored to build something that would make a difference in the community.

“The jobs that [the complex] brings to the community members, the experiences, the memories, and all that fun that this family entertainment center is going to offer is a very special opportunity for us,” Mays said.

Mays said over the course of the next 14 months, community members would get to witness the transformation of the family entertainment center, and he couldn’t wait to be at the grand opening of the facility in October 2018.

The 88,350 square-foot entertainment center will feature a 27,309 square-foot movie theater, including eight screens, and a 29,022 square-foot bowling alley that will include 30 lanes.

A 4,214 square-foot arcade will be home to a variety of the latest video games, and a 3,570 square-foot billiards room will include 10 tables.

In addition, the entertainment complex will include a 15,294 square-foot concourse, bar and concessions area in which to get refreshments.

Currently, Tachi Palace Hotel & Casino employs over 1,200 people and is home to 2,000 gaming machines, 24 table games, 255 guest rooms, a spa, five restaurants and 6,000 square feet of meeting space.

“With this new event center, we might have to change our name to Tachi Palace Hotel and Resort Casino,” Barrios said as the crowd clapped and cheered. “But, that’ll be in the future.”

The complex is scheduled to open in September 2018.

The reporter can be reached at 583-2423 or jzavala@hanfordsentinel.com

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