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New casino cruise ship opens in Galveston

Credit: Jacks or Better

GALVESTON – You can now gamble in Galveston! That is, if you can swim just over nine miles offshore. OR, you can relax on the newly-arrived casino cruise ship and save your arms for the slot machines and roulette tables.

The Jacks or Better Casino cruise ship made its first voyage out of the Galveston Yacht Basin April 7, taking gamblers out just far enough to be in federal waters, 9.1 miles from shore, to party and gamble.

The 155-foot ship leaves the Galveston port twice a day, Wednesday through Saturday, offering an 11 a.m. day trip and a 6:30 p.m. evening trip. Sundays offer a 1 p.m. trip.

Tickets to board are $15 and gamblers will cruise for about six hours each trip.

The ship hit a snag over Easter weekend when it crashed into a buoy on Saturday, putting a deep scratch along one side and scaring passengers, and canceling the Sunday outing for mechanical issues.

The casino says the damage was minor, it’s the first time the ship has been involved in an accident — but not the first time the hidden buoy has been hit.