Our Story

FIREKEEPERS CASINO HOTEL

After more than 10 years of planning, strategy, and vision, the Nottawaseppi Huron Band of the Potawatomi opened the doors to FireKeepers Casino in August of 2009.


The property features a 111,700-square foot gaming floor with 2,900 slot machines, 70 table games, multiple restaurants and lounges, a live poker room and bingo room. This $300 million project created a unique gaming destination in the mid-west all while initially creating 1,500 jobs for the local community. FireKeepers Casino Hotel is located just off Interstate 94 at Exit 104 in Battle Creek, Michigan and is a favorite gaming destination for residents in central and southern Michigan, northern Indiana and western Ohio.

Less than two years later, on March 1, 2011, FireKeepers Casino broke ground on a major expansion. This initiative included an 8-story resort-style hotel and expanded Bingo room. During this construction phase, the tribe’s commitment to local spending resulted in awarding contracts that total more than $25 million to the State of Michigan.

FireKeepers hotel expansion opened its doors to the public on December 12, 2012. The expansion showcased a 243 room resort-style hotel complete with indoor pool, exercise facility, a full-service restaurant named Smoke ‘n Fire, and business center. The addition also features a functional multi-purpose Event Center that is capable of seating up to 2,000 guests as a concert venue. When not in use as a concert venue for superstar performers such as Tony Bennett, Reba McIntyre, and Tim Allen, the versatile space can accommodate banquets, corporate meetings, trade shows, and other events. This expansion brought 300 additional jobs to the Battle Creek area.

FireKeepers Casino Hotel, in just over two years of operation, has been named a Four Diamond Hotel by AAA, one of the hospitality industry’s premier honors. The 243 room hotel, featuring 26 suites, earns an achievement that ranks FireKeepers as a premier establishment esteemed by AAA’s professional inspectors. The Four Diamond recognition is given to just five percent of the more than 28,000 approved by AAA properties rated each year. FireKeepers received this award again in 2018.

In April 2016, FireKeepers casino renovated guest favorite Café 24/7 restaurant. The new design was developed by Kalamazoo architects, Seven Generations Architecture and Engineering and construction was directed by Moore Trosper Construction of Holt, Michigan. The refreshed atmosphere combines an old-school diner feel with new modern features such as contemporary lighting, stylish graphics, and even a chalkboard wall to write specials. The Café 24/7 menu will feature new, fresh items, as well as some of the classic favorites like the All American Burger, Hot Turkey Sandwich and Chicken Pot Pie.

Also in April 2016, FireKeepers announced another expansion to the property, which would introduce a convenience store and gas station located adjacent to the casino. The convenience store and gas station, named “FireKeepers Pit Stop”, features a car wash, a convenience store with various food and beverage items, as well as a place to fill up your gas tank while visiting FireKeepers. The FireKeepers Pit Stop opened November 1, 2016.

Dacey’s Taphouse opened in December 2016. A new restaurant and bar that focuses on Michigan’s craft beer industry as well as great food, the Taphouse features a rustic atmosphere, with contemporary features opens to the casino floor and comfortably seats 175.

2017 marked the opening of The Fire Hub, a unique, multi-million dollar casino community reinvestment project, with FireKeepers Casino directly purchasing, redeveloping and creating a downtown restaurant concept, plus adjacent food pantry to assist those less fortunate in the community, all housed in a restored historic city firehouse. Eighty percent of profits are pooled to benefit local charities, while twenty percent provide maintenance capital dollars. Another major element of the project is the development of nearby tribal lands to farm and grow vegetables, with a goal of delivering a free salad bar to students in area communities. Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder joined the Nottawaseppi Huron Band of the Potawatomi Tribal Council, owners of FireKeepers Casino Hotel, along with a large contingent of elected officials and key Michigan business partners to commemorate the Grand Opening.

Kathy George was named CEO in May of 2017 after serving for five years as General Manager and Vice President of Hotel Operations. Her commitment to service is not exclusive to her work, she is also very active in the local community. She sits on the Board of Directors for the Calhoun County Visitors Bureau, plays a large role in raising funds for S.A.F.E. Place, the area’s domestic violence shelter, and has served as the Tournament Director for the FireKeepers Casino Hotel Championship, a stop on the Symetra Tour – Road to The LPGA.

FireKeepers executive staff and leaders of the NHBP announced in July of 2018 their plans to construct a new hotel tower. With more rooms and potentially more meeting space, FireKeepers will be able to market and attract guests from greater distances, bringing new visitors to the area and boosting the local economy. The company broke ground on the expansion on June 17, 2019.

Construction on the hotel tower will provide an additional 203 hotel rooms, including fourteen suites, plus a transformed hotel lobby area, a new signature restaurant, new high limit slot and table game areas and a new VIP lounge. The groundbreaking ceremony took place less than two months before the tribe celebrates the 10th Anniversary of the Grand Opening of FireKeepers Casino.

The new eight-story hotel will be designed in alignment with FireKeepers’ existing standards of excellence, as the current hotel has been designated a AAA Four Diamond award winner for the past five consecutive years. The new hotel rooms will feature upscale built-in décor along with the latest in guest service technology.

The welcoming 39,000 square foot first level will deliver a vibrant new lobby bar and front desk while increasing the focus on seven main pillars which represent the Seven Grandfather Teachings of the Nottawaseppi Huron Band of the Potawatomi: Love, Respect, Bravery, Truth, Honesty, Humility, and Wisdom.

FireKeepers signature restaurant, Nibi, one of Michigan’s finest dining experiences, will enjoy a new location with seating for approximately 125, and an interior that retains a focus on the tribal namesake, water, plus a new fire feature. Nibi will also feature expanded wine storage and presentation, and a private dining area for up to 20, perfect for special parties or small business meetings.

The construction project also redesigns a section of FireKeepers existing gaming space. When complete, there will be new High Limit Gaming sections for slots and table games, plus a new bar and VIP lounge for select Red Hot Rewards Club members.
The scale of this project will provide an economic boost for many sectors of the construction community. At the peak of construction, there will be roughly 250 skilled trades working on the site! The estimated completion date is Spring 2021.

Also coming soon, sports wagering and online gaming! FireKeepers leadership announced their partnership with Scientific Games Corporation to provide sports betting and iGaming to its players, following recent passage of a bill legalizing sports and online casino betting in the state. Scientific Games will launch retail sports betting at FireKeepers Casino as well as online sports betting and iGaming across the entire state of Michigan once regulations allow.

LOCAL AND STATE REVENUE SHARING BOARD

March 5, 2019 —

February 26, 2020 The Nottawaseppi Huron Band of the Potawatomi (NHBP), owners of FireKeepers Casino Hotel in Battle Creek, today announced that combined lifetime revenue sharing payments to the State of Michigan and the Local Revenue Sharing Board have exceeded $217 million!  The continued operating excellence of the property led to its fifth consecutive new annual contribution record, with combined payments of over $24.7 million to the State of Michigan and the FireKeepers Local Revenue Sharing Board (FLRSB).

 

Payments have increased every year except one time versus the prior year since the doors opened in August 2009.  The payment to the State of Michigan totals more than $18.9 million, an increase of 2.31% over the 2019 payment, while the payment to the FLRSB of over $5.8 million is 1.86% higher than one year ago. This brings the total monies NHBP has contributed to the State of Michigan to over $162.7 million and $54.8 million to the FLRSB and creates a combined lifetime contribution which totals $217,494,894!

THE FIRE HUB

Located in the historic Fire Station No. 4, on the corner Kendall Street and Dickman Road in Battle Creek. The Fire Hub restaurant is open Tuesday – Saturday from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. The menu features upscale, yet affordable, items with a delicious selection of freshly made breads and muffins, breakfast items, soups, salads, hot and cold sandwiches, an array of pizzas and, of course, scrumptious desserts.

The Fire Hub’s most important goal is to give back to the community and this will be accomplished via multiple programs. First, The Kendall Street Pantry, located in the rear section of the building, will work in conjunction with the Food Bank of South Central Michigan, distributing food from shelves to those less fortunate. Secondly, a large greenhouse on nearby tribal land will be utilized to grow food, with the goal of providing a free salad bar for downtown schools in Battle Creek. The third element is the creation of a fund to support local charities, with eighty percent of all restaurant profits providing the monies. The remaining twenty percent of profits will be reinvested in the property.

To learn more, visit www.firehubbc.com.

FIREKEEPERS CASINO HOTEL CHAMPIONSHIP

FireKeepers has hosted the FireKeepers Casino Hotel Championship, a Symetra Tour Road to the LPGA event, for the past five years. The tournament is held each summer at Battle Creek Country Club, located at 318 Country Club Dr., Battle Creek, Mich. Battle Creek Country Club, a private members-only course, designed by Willie Park, Jr., opened in 1919. The course features 6,744 yards of golf.

FireKeepers Casino Hotel donates all proceeds earned from the event to The Haven of Rest in Battle Creek. The Haven serves homeless men, male substance abusers, homeless women and their children, adult men with disabilities who need assisted living, and inmates of the Calhoun County Jail. They provide emergency shelter, meals, daily basic personal care needs, counseling, substance abuse recovery assistance, case management, support groups, transitional housing, and referrals for medical care, legal assistance, and employment. The Haven also provides meals to the public several days a week. Each year The Haven serves 55,000 meals to over 1,700 different homeless persons each year; they also serve approximately 45 meals a day to the general public on weekends, holidays and other days when the soup kitchen at the Salvation Army is closed. The Haven provides comfort and counseling to 600 inmates of the Calhoun County Jail daily.

DONATION DRIVES AND CHARITABLE GIVING

Every year FireKeepers Casino Hotel participates in an array of local initiatives to benefit a variety of organizations within the community. These include blood, food, toy and coat drives. FireKeepers has participated in a food drive every year since opening in 2009. In 2009 alone, Team Members donated an entire pallet worth of non-perishable items to the Salvation Army’s Christmas Basket Food Drive and three pallets of bulk food to the Salvation Army’s Soup Kitchen. In 2015, FireKeepers collected over 1,000 pounds of food, with a 5 year total of over 5,000 pounds to be donated to the Food Bank of South Central Michigan. Since opening, more than 750 team members have donated to the various organizations.

For the ninth consecutive year, FireKeepers Casino Hotel has generously provided turkeys to five area food banks prior to the start of the holiday season; in 2018, the company raised the bar by providing an additional 1,500 turkeys for the Battle Creek area, bringing the total number of turkeys donated to 2,500. Since opening, FireKeepers Casino Hotel has made it a point to contribute to local area food banks, and many community organizations not only during the holiday season, but throughout the year. This also includes distributions to the FireKeepers Local Revenue Sharing Board (FLRSB), distributions to the state of Michigan, as well as focusing business operations on local spending. The Food Bank of South Central Michigan, located in Battle Creek, Mich. received 1,200 turkeys to assist our local community in an impactful way. Four regional locations have been selected for a donation of 200 turkeys each:

  • Food Gatherers located in Ann Arbor, Mich.
  • Feeding America West Michigan Food Bank located in Comstock Park, Mich.
  • Community Harvest Food Bank located in Fort Wayne, Ind.
  • Greater Lansing Food Bank, Lansing Mich.

Since its opening in 2012, the Hotel has donated hundreds of hotel rooms to a variety of different organizations and local businesses in need. FireKeepers has also given a total of over $150,000 in monetary donations and gifts-in-kind to local organizations. These organizations include lions clubs, community foundations, PTAs, and animal rescues.

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