When gambling (OK, gaming) became legal in Deadwood (again) on October 1st, 1989, I was working in radio in Rapid City. My morning show partner and I were doing a live broadcast from the balcony at the Franklin Hotel overlooking Deadwood's Historic Mainstreet. There was a gun duel on that street at high noon, and once those guns fired their blanks and one of the participants fell 'dead', gambling was on!

I lived in the Black Hills for about the next 10 years and, like thousands of others, would make an occasional trek up to Deadwood to have a brew or two and see if I might pick up a few bucks at the tables (that happened, uh, infrequently). We'd stop into Saloon 10, wander up to the Franklin, maybe check out the Gold Dust and had to check out the Midnight Star. After all, Kevin Costner owned the Midnight Star.

I recall along the stairway leading up to the second floor were clothes and props from Kevin's many movie hits, not only 'Dances With Wolves', but 'The Untouchables', 'Field of Dreams', 'Bull Durham' and more.

I haven't been back to Deadwood for several years, but the next time I ventured into them thar Hills, I'd check out the Midnight Star one more time.


According to BlackHillsFox.com the 'Midnight Star' is closed as of Tuesday August 29.

The Rapid City Journal also reported that the lights went out at the Midnight Star.

Apparently, while a sign on the door said 'Closed Today', an employee said no, its closed permanently. Black Hills Fox dot com went on to report that Jake's Restaurant on the upper level had closed last year. I didn't know that, I'm always late to the party.

I'm not sure what this means to Deadwood and the gaming and tourist industry, but I'm assuming its not good. So what will happen to, what used to be, the 'Midnight Star'?

Stay tuned.

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