Happy Days are all around here


Have you ever felt like anything was possible? Like you finally had this whole “life” thing figured out, and that the world was indeed in the palm of your hand?

Coastal Point • File Photo
Yeah, me neither.

However, there is a little room for optimism in the heart of this dashing bald editor these days. It’s like there is a light bursting through the clouds and it feels like I can grab its energy in the palm of my hand and accomplish anything and everything that captures my imagination.

It really began last week, when we welcomed Susan Argo back to the Coastal Point dysfunctional family. Fine, it’s not exactly the same — Susan is now happily married and has changed her last name to Mutz, I’ve lost a little more hair and gained a little more weight and Shaun Lambert is now ... well, Shaun still wakes up at noon and stumbles into the office looking like he’s still about four hours short on the sleep front. It’s like shooting off a firecracker in a cave in the dead of winter and arousing a grizzly bear that’s in mid-hiberna...

But I digress.

The entire office has been re-energized with Susan’s triumphant return home. She’s a hard worker, she takes what she does very seriously and she’s just flat-out fun around the office. Ever work with someone who is always in a good mood? It just makes the day a little nicer, doesn’t it?

Also, it makes for great humor on those rare occasions when the happy person gets mad. There’s no better theater than a nice person trying to look upset, and only getting angrier as those around him or her begin to giggle at the spectacle.

Yes, life is pretty darn good around here.

And it just continues to get better. Local developer Preston Schell is attempting to build Del Pointe Resort & Racino, located at Independence in Millsboro, off Route 5. According to a story in The News Journal on Tuesday, the facility would have a hotel, retail space, a harness-racing track and slots.

Obviously, the three existing casinos in the state would have a problem with this venture, but the announcement recently by Gov. Jack Markell that he would support three more casinos in the state to make up for the budget shortfall offers at least a little optimism to Schell’s efforts.

And I honestly couldn’t be happier.

Look, I’m a poker player, and don’t dabble much in slots. So this really wouldn’t satisfy my ridiculous infatuation with card games. However, this could have a significant impact on our entire region, and might be able to stave off a potentially serious problem.

With Maryland recently approving slots, and Ocean Downs right down the road identified as one of the locations for said slots, the economic impact on our community could be significant. How many vacationers — or full-time residents, for that matter — would spend their evenings down the road at Ocean Downs as opposed to the Bethany Beach boardwalk or local restaurants and bars? It could have a very real and serious impact.

And this project could do much more for this entire community other than defending us against a competitive entertainment venue. For instance, the shoulder months of spring and fall could see many more renters to the area, as well as homeowners coming down for the weekends, with alternative nightlife at their disposal. Wouldn’t you imagine that we would be less-dependent on weather and holidays if Washingtonians could come down for a weekend to play the games at Del Pointe? Wouldn’t our restaurants and shops do better just because of increased numbers of people down here?

I know there are people who are simply opposed to gambling of any nature, and I certainly understand and respect that opinion. It can be trouble for people who play beyond their limits, and the potential is indeed there to attract some people that could be viewed as “undesireables.” This will not be welcomed unanimously, and it really shouldn’t be. There should be argument. There should be discussion. That’s how things get done constructively.

However...

This could be a true economic boost for this entire region. There will be jobs at Del Pointe — some that pay very well. There will be money going to the state, which sorely needs it. And there will be an impact to the number of visitors that frequent our community — possibly affecting numerous local businesses.

The governor wants more gaming facilities in the state to boost the sagging economy. It’s going to happen. We might as well benefit from this as it happens.