Kentucky Lottery Keno game premieres - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Kentucky Lottery Keno game premieres

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) --A form of Keno is said to have been invented 5,000 years ago by the Chinese.

But today was the first day you could play the game in Kentucky at about 400 locations.

And it didn't take long for the first Keno card to be sold in Kentucky by the Lottery Corporation.

The first card sold at 5A.M. Monday morning at a Shell station in Nicholasville.

Nicole Martin is one of the first to play the game, at Wick's Pizza Monday afternoon. 

"Next time I will probably get four or five friends meet up here and have some drinks and pizza and play the game," says Martin.

Players like Martin say the game is reminds them of Bingo.

Drawings for Keno are held every five minutes as players try to match numbers that are randomly selected.

The game is designed to be played mostly in bars and restaurants.

"It is more of a social game," says Martin, "so you are not here just playing by yourself; you can get everyone involved and see how everybody plays and see if anybody wins."

Earlier this year the lottery board approved Keno as a way to increase income. It predicts the game will bring in an additional $ 28 million between now and the end of June, a portion of which goes to the state for college scholarships and tuition grants.

But the Family Foundation of Kentucky says it is concerned about the continued growth of legal gaming that takes money out of the hands of those who can least afford it.

Lottery CEO Arch Gleason responds, "There will be some players who play more than they should," he says, "we will encourage them to play responsibly; we have materials on display at those locations and I hope they take advantage of that information available to them."

Gleason says Keno attracts better educated players who have more money to spend than traditional lottery customers.

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Kentucky Lottery starts Keno on Monday

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