21st Annual Southern Gaming Summit showcases new technology

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - This week, the Mississippi Coast Coliseum has been transformed into a casino gamer's paradise. People have been able to stop by and check out the newest slot and table games manufacturers have to offer. Some of the games have never been seen before.

"There are a lot of products here that I'm interested in getting. They are very compelling. You walk by it, they kind of flash. The presentation makes you want to go over there, give it a shot and see what happens," said Tarzan Treadway.

Treadway has worked in slot operations for 20 years, and says while a lot has changed, the one thing that never gets old is a game designed to grab your attention.

"We're considered in the industry probably the brightest and flashiest of all. If you look at our steppers behind me, our reels have over 140 LEDs behind each reel," said Paul Omohundro, who is the Electronic Table Games Business Manager for Aruze Gaming.

The expo welcomed some of the biggest names in slot manufacturing. Some companies, like Ainsworth North America, are new to the Southern Gaming Summit and brought some products that are new to the coast.

"We have slant tops, which are the ones where you sit at. We have the uprights, different size monitors, games and it's so nice to just be able to come here, be new to the market and show everybody what we've got," said Mike Dreitzer, who is President of Ainsworth North America.

While the expo is definitely a place to check out the newest equipment the gaming industry has to offer, it's also a way for casino and gaming executives to get to know one another.

"It's relationship building number one for sure. When we have new products that are coming out, it's a chance to get it out in front of everybody at one time," said Omohundro.

The expo features more than 120 exhibitors from all over the nation. This year, there was even a Best of Show competition planned. Attendees were able to play the games entered in the contest and then vote at iPad stations, but due to Internet complications, they had to cancel the competition.

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