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Terribles Town Casino Pahrump Celebrates 10th Anniversary

Terrible's Town Casino in Pahrump Valley will be celebrating its 10th anniversary on June 25, Sunday.

Terrible's Town Casino was established by the Herbst family, whose main business had been service stations and slot machines. Before the building of the casino, the scene on Highway 160 was a lot different, with empty lots stretching in many directions.

"I think the only thing that was there was Rebel. There weren't all these gas stations," Margaret Haines, marketing manager for Terrible's Town said. "When we opened, that actually added another full service station." There wasn't a Walgreen's on the other corner, a Bank of America branch, a Wal-Mart store down the street --- conveniences that the own now enjoy.

Ten years ago in 1996 local citizens had been very excited about the opening, lining up in droves to try out the slot machines. Terrible's Town Casino had given out free T-Shirts and ball caps at the time, and for a long time the town's population had been walking advertisements for the casino. "There were so many people lined up for the slot club, all we could do was take information," Haines said.

Terrible's town also created a lot of jobs for the locals. Today, seven of the original 160 pioneer employees are still with the casino. Upon its opening, Terrible's Town Casino became the third largest employer in Pahrump Valley.

The Success of the first Terrible's Town Casino promted the Herbst family to open another in December 1998, Terrible's Lakeside Casino on Homestead Road.

Then another, and another and another. Since then, the Herbst family opened Terrible's Hotel and Casino on Paradise Road in Las Vegas, Terrible's Casino and Bowl in Henderson, a Terrible's casino in Searchlight and began operating three riverboat casinos on the upper Mississippi River.

As for the small town in Pahrump Valley, Haines explaines: "Jerry Herbst had had a house out here for some time and they had the (service) station at the end of town for some time." She adds, ""The Herbsts have had an interest in Pahrump for many years before they built this place."

As for the outrageous name, it comes from the days when the Herbst family ran gas stations in the Midwest. Apparently, The gas station owners were getting together, planning strategies, and somebody made a comment, 'That terrible sonuvabitch is going to put us out of business'. Ed Herbst heard about the comment and adopted the name, said Bill Ladd, Terrible's Town general manager.

Terrible's Town will offer $10,000 in cash giveaways as part of the 10th anniversary promotion, with a $1,000 drawing at 6 p.m. increasing to $5,000 by 10 p.m.

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