Electronic Pull-Tabs Expand in the Northland

Posted at: 11/17/2012 6:13 PM
Updated at: 11/17/2012 11:18 PM
By: Travis Dill

Minnesota is the first state to dive into electronic pull-tabs, or e-tabs, and that helping local charities.

Alan Lund, Executive Director of Allied Charities of Minnesota, took part in the Lawful Gambling Convention at the DECC this week.

“We believe that electronics are a way to help our charities deliver more to our bottom line our mission of helping the communities we live and work in,” Lund said.

Lund says the move to e-tabs is important for charities.

“We're looking at the future. We believe that if we don't change, evolve, adapt that as an industry at some point we will cease to exist,” Lund said.

The first wave of e-tabs came to Duluth in October, and they have been expanding ever since. Genny Hinnenkamp said the Irving Community Club now has seven sites in the area.

Some feared the e-tabs would hinder the sale of tradition pull-tabs, but Hinnenkamp said that is not the case.

“No it hasn't. It hasn't hurt the paper sales at all. The paper sales are doing just fine,” Hinnenkamp said. “We thought it would be just the younger group that would be playing the e-tabs, but we found that all ages like it,” she said.

Hinnenkamp said the graphics and sound on the e-tabs are better than most customers expect, and that makes it a new and unique experience.

Customers have several games to choose from, and some resemble games customers play on their home computers.

The e-tab sales are helping fund the new Vikings stadium, but charities like the Irving Community Club donate locally.

“And like I said we gave back $123,000 back tot he community last year,” Hinnenkamp said.

So whether you try the new e-tabs or stick with traditional pull-tabs, everybody wins.