EQC opens new non-smoking addition

There to cut the ribbon were Puyallup Chairman Bill Sterud (in sportcoat), Puyallup Tribal Councilmembers David Bean and Annette Bryen, EQC General Manager Frank Wright (in back) with Wright’s granddaughter Alexis Wright joining in. Photo by Rose Thiele

The Emerald Queen Casino in Fife celebrated a ribbon cutting on Nov. 17 for a new non-smoking addition. With its own dedicated entrance, the addition allows guests to enjoy casino amenities including gaming with an option to walk straight into the non-smoking area without having to walk through the smoking area first. Guests can also go straight to the hotel through the non-smoking section, the buffet, dining room and more.

The “soft” grand opening that day included giveaways to the first 300 guests and a 16-foot cake complete with each of the Puyallup Tribal Council members’ names written on it in frosting, as it was the Council that made the new addition possible.

“None of this would be possible without the support of Tribal Council taking care of our needs at the casino,” said EQC General Manager Frank Wright. “One of the more important things was to provide a better non-smoking facility where we have an entrance and exit into the parking lot without having to go through smoking. We know we have guests who deal with asthma and don’t have the ability to enjoy gaming if they have to go through smoking.”

Puyallup Chairman Bill Sterud welcomed representatives from the City of Fife and Fife-Milton-Edgewood Chamber of Commerce who were there to take part in the festivities.

“We are part of this community and they are part of our community. Thank you for being here,” he said before turning to the many EQC employees who were there. “It couldn’t have happened without people like you who work here, who spend your time, your hours, working for us. For me, the thank-you is to you, all of you.”

Puyallup Tribal Councilmember David Bean echoed Sterud’s words. “As the chairman said, we couldn’t do this without our hardworking team so we raise our hands to each and every one of you for all the hard work you do.”

Tribal Councilmember Annette Bryan noted what a good day it was for the ribbon cutting at a time when the tribe has experienced the deaths of several tribal members lately. “Our community has been experiencing quite a bit of loss so to have the opportunity to come here today and celebrate something wonderful is really great,” she said. “I, too, raise my hands to all the staff, the community, our neighbors, our Tribal Council and our general manager Frank Wright.”

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