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Oyster Bay Casino developers choose operator

D’IBERVILLE — Developers of the proposed Oyster Bay Casino have signed a management agreement and hope to start construction of the $170 million resort by the end of the year.

Tom Moore says that he and business partner Duane Lewis, a developer from Birmingham, Ala., hired Falcon Gaming of Gulfport to manage the daily operations of the casino resort.

With a management team in place and a builder expected to be named this week, Moore said they will make final adjustments before Oyster Bay goes to the Mississippi Gaming Commission for permission to proceed.

Plans call for a 41,000-square-foot casino floor with 1,200 slot machines and 25 table games. Three restaurants — fine dining, a cafe and buffet — are planned along with a 290-room hotel, tropical swimming pool, an 850-seat entertainment venue and parking garage, all with a New Orleans theme.

Once approved by the Gaming Commission, Oyster Bay will be built on 10 acres just west of the Jackson County line. Part of the land will be leased from D’Iberville and an additional 10 acres are available for expansion.

Falcon Gaming, the management company chosen to run the casino, is operated by Gene McCarlie and Craig Adams

McCarlie most recently was a director of Silver Slipper Casino in Hancock County before selling his ownership in the property. He is a McComb native and has 50 years of experience in the casino business. He spent more than 30 years in Las Vegas, working as an assistant to Jack Binion at the Horseshoe Casino.

McCarlie and his family opened Tunica’s first casino, Splash, in October 1992 and later operated Biloxi Belle and Gold Shore in Biloxi. He also operated casinos in Aruba and in Colombia. McCarlie got national attention when he was featured on the television show “60 Minutes” playing golf with Nevada gambler Billy Walters for $5,000 a hole.

Adams lived in south Mississippi when his father was in the military and returned when casinos were legalized in the 1990s. He worked his way up in the industry, holding finance positions at the Biloxi Belle, Lady Luck and Casino Magic, and was general manager of the President Casino Broadwater Resort before it was sold.

“We have several other amenities we’d like to add,” said Moore.

McCarlie said the resort will have New Orleans styling, host special events and specialize in seafood and oysters.

“We’re ready to roll,” he said. “D’Iberville’s wanted a casino for a lot of years,”

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