Spotlight On Mohegan Sun Pocano

1280 Pennsylvania 315, Wilkes-Barre, PA 18702(570) 831-2100mohegansunpocono.com

A four star resort with award-winning dining and Vegas-style casino – 10 miles south of Scranton!

Mohegan Sun Pocano is located in Plains Township on the outskirts of Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania. The property is a resort and Vegas-style casino featuring a four star hotel, table games, slot and video poker machines, a live poker room, exceptional dining, bars, and entertainment. In addition, the property is one of Pennsylvania’s six “racinos”, featuring live harness racing in the evenings. How successful and popular a gaming destination this is can be evidenced by the parking lot alone – which can accommodate 5,000 vehicles.

How it came to pass

The original Mohegan Sun Casino is in southeastern Connecticut, near the town of Uncasville. The Mohegan Tribal Gaming Authority expanded its domain in November, 2005 when it purchased Downs Racing, a harness racetrack in Plains Township, PA. They then quickly received permission to operate a casino on the same property, thanks to Pennsylvania’s 2004 legislation permitting gaming (mostly slots). In November, 2006, the new facility opened as Mohegan Sun Pocano and was the first legal land-based casino in Pennsylvania.

Table games were added to PA gaming licenses in 2010 and the operation expanded to handle the increased traffic. In 2013, they added a 268 room hotel. With this addition, the property came into being as currently constituted – a luxury resort, casino, and racetrack with an impressive array of dining, nightlife, and entertainment amenities.

What’s available in the casino?

Mohegan Sun Pocano bettors have a wide variety of types of gambling to entice them. There’s the racetrack of course, and the casino’s beautifully decorated 82,000 square feet of floor space houses over 2,300 slot and video poker machines as well as over 90 table games and an 18-table poker room. Let’s dive into each of these in turn.

Lots and lots of video poker and slots!

Machine players at Mohegan Sun Pocano have their pick of over 2,300 different machines to play. Denominations on the slots range from penny machines to those that offer a max bet of $100/spin. All their machines are coinless, using a modern cash/ticket in – ticket out paper system.

Here’s a list of some of the most popular slot machines on tap here:

  • Lucky Pony
  • Wheel of Fortune
  • Celestial Riches
  • Triple Red Hot 7’s
  • Lock It Link – Diamonds
  • Lock it Link – Night Life
  • Lock it Link – Cats, Hats, and more Bats
  • Lock It Link – Eureka Reel Blast
  • Monopoly
  • Spiderman
  • Hot Shot Progressives

There are many more, of course, and new slots are being created every day. We can expect Mohegan Sun Pocano to stay on top of the trends.

The video poker machines here are all multi-game, multi-denominational machines that feature all the most popular games and limits. Don’t miss the 33 video poker machines located at the elevated Sunburst Bar located in the center of the casino floor.

Table games – both traditional and modern

Mohegan Sun Pocano spreads all the classic table games you would expect in any casino throughout the ages, along with many of the newer variations that have appeared on the gaming scene in recent years. In addition, they also feature stadium games and hybrid fusion games (more about below).

Here’s what you’ll find in the pit proper:

  • Blackjack (featuring the Match the Dealer, House Money, and Lucky Ladies side bets and the Blazing 7’s progressive jackpot side bet)
  • Roulette
  • Baccarat (mini)
  • Craps
  • Spanish 21
  • Pai Gow Poker
  • Pai Gow Tiles
  • Let It Ride
  • Mississippi Stud Poker
  • Three Card Poker

Stadium gaming and hybrid fusion games (blackjack and roulette)

Mohegan Sun Pocano has embraced these two new ways to play traditional table games. They are using the Interblock Blackjack system to offer stadium seating blackjack games. There is a live dealer, and players can sit at any of ten different terminals near the game – which can be viewed directly, or on the terminal’s two video screens. Once all bets have been placed, the dealer deals out all necessary cards. Wins and losses show up immediately on the terminals, which can be cashed in and out using the same paper ticket system as in the slot and video poker machines.

In an interesting twist, each players hit/stand decisions affect only themselves! The dealer reveals all cards necessary to complete all the action required, but there’s no need to yell at the player on “third base” for “taking the dealer’s bust card”. Finally there’s peace at the blackjack table!

The fusion hybrid games on offer here are for roulette games. Players are again seated at a terminal, but the twist here is that they can bet on up to four live roulette games at once. A touchscreen with tabs lets you view and switch views of the four different games. It’s just like regular roulette – times four! It’s also more personalized and comfortable, which players seem to really like.

Let’s visit the track

The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocano is a harness racing track that offers evening races from March through November. Nationwide races are also simulcast here, so horse bettors will have access to all the racing action they could want. Interestingly, the racetrack offers a different player rewards system than that used in the main casino (more on which below). This system is called Racing Rewards and works only at the track.

Poker anyone?

The poker room at Mohegan Sun Pocano is a respectable 18 tables in size and features several flat screen TVs, a full bar, and is completely non-smoking. The room spreads occasional tournament series in addition to their daily tournament offerings. They also spread a decent selection of cash games. These include:

  • $1/2 No Limit Hold’em
  • $1/3 No Limit Hold’em
  • $2/5 No Limit Hold’em
  • $2/2 Pot Limit Omaha
  • $5/5 Pot Limit Omaha
  • $10/20 Limit HOSE (Hold’em/Omaha-8/Stud/Stud-8)
  • $4/8 Limit Omaha-8 (with a kill)
  • $1-5 Spread Limit Stud

Additionally, the staff will usually spread additional games upon request, based on the level of interest.

The room also offers a bad beat jackpot as well as several promotions, including a high hand payout and a progressive royal flush payout.

And now for the bonuses: The Momentum Rewards program

Mohegan Sun Pocano uses a card-based player reward system that has five tiers, each with corresponding perks and priviledges. It is free to join the program and new signups receive $10 free play. Even better, new signups that opt to receive exclusive email offers receive an additional $10 in free play.

Every time you play at Mohegan Sun Pocano using your Momentum Rewards card, you earn both Momentum Dollars and Status Points.

Momentum Dollars can be used to spend on a variety of amenities at the resort, as well as the original Mohegan Sun property in Connecticut or their casino partners, Resorts Casino Hotel in Atlantic City, New Jersey and Ilani in Ridgefield, Washington.

Status Points advance you through the five tiers of the rewards system. Each higher level awards the player more benefits. Additionally, as you advance in status, Momentum Dollar Accelerators will kick in to boost your Momentum Dollar earning rate. The higher your status, the faster you earn rewards.

The Status Point qualifying periods are broken into six-month blocks; January-June and July-December. The five tiers of the program and the required Status Points to achieve these levels are:

  • Core -49 Status Points and below
  • Ignite  – 50-99 Status Points
  • Leap – 100-399 Status Points
  • Ascend – 400-1,199 Status Points
  • Soar – 1,200 Status Points and above

As an additional wrinkle: Players in the top three tiers earn Momentum Achievement Awards which, unlike Momentum Dollars, cannot be rolled over but must be used in the same month they are earned. Also, Momentum Achievement Awards are only useful at Mohegan Sun Pocano. They can be used for:

  • Hotel stays
  • VIP Lounge access
  • Buffet
  • Entertainment
  • Conversion into Momentum Dollars

Here’s a complete breakdown of the benefits and perks of the Momentum Rewards program:

BenefitCOREIGNITELEAPASCENDSOAR
Complimentary check cashing ($2,500 max per day)>$300>$300>$300XX
Invitations to free slot play, events, promotions, tournaments, and birthday offersXXXXX
Earn Momentum Dollar Accelerators (Slots)25% (earns 25% faster than CORE)50% (earns 50% faster than CORE)75% (earns 75% faster than CORE)100% (earns 100% faster than CORE)
Complimentary scooter rentalXXXX
Discount on Mohegan Sun Pocano logo items at MOGO5% off10% off15% off20% off
Discounted valet parkingXFREEFREEFREE
Earn Momentum Dollar Accelerators (table games)25% (earns 25% faster than CORE)50% (earns 50% faster than CORE)70% (earns 70% faster than CORE)
Earn Momentum achievement awardsXXX
Complimentary tickets to Wise Crackers comedy clubXXX
Reserved parking, hotel upgrades, access to VIP Lounge, and access to a casino hostXX
Exchange Momentum Dollars for free slot play2 for 11 for 1
Cash advance fee waived at the players club>$5,000>$5,000
Complimentary round of golf at partnering coursesOne round each monthTwo rounds each month
Discount at pro shops of partnering courses10% off10% off
Discount at Spa Saphire (Mon-Thu)10% off10% off
10% discount at food court, late hotel check-out, and priority line at Timbers BuffetXX
Dedicated player development executive, no resort fees, priority restaurant seating, and food court discounts.X
Two complimentary tickets to Rustic Kitchen cooking show per qualifying periodX

Online gaming

As of August, 2018, Mohegan Sun Pocano hasn’t entered Pennsylvania’s nascent online gaming market. They haven’t even thrown their hat into the ring (though they are expected to). Currently, nine of their fellow PA casinos have applied for the state’s $10 million license allowing them to operate online slots, table games, and peer-to-peer gaming (geek-speak for online poker). If, as expected, they were to follow suit, Mohegan Sun Pocano would be expected to use their relationship with tech gaming partner Scientific Games to help them create and manage their online gaming offerings.

For Pennsylvanian’s who don’t want to wait to play online, you could perhaps consider trying Pennsylvania’s online lottery. It’s quick, easy, and a ton of fun to play. You can win real money, and perhaps best of all, new players receive $5 free to play online when they sign up.

So many restaurants…

Guests at Mohegan Sun Pocano shouldn’t go hungry with the vast array of restaurants to choose from here. There’s upscale, downscale and everything in between. Here’s the breakdown:

  • Bar Louie – Awarded “Concept of Tomorrow” by Restaurant Hospitality Magazine, this hip eatery features oversized sandwiches and a wide variety of appetizers, pastas and entrees along with signature cocktails and a large assortment of beers, microbrews, and wines.
  • Rustic Kitchen – This multi-award winning bistro and bar features an Italian/Mediterranean influenced menu along with an amazing selection of fine wines. It also hosts the “In the Kitchen” cooking show featuring celebrity chef Kim McLendon.
  • Ruth’s Chris Steak House – The restaurant that showed the world how great a steak can be. Also known for exceptional seafood and New Orleans inspired appetizers and unforgettable deserts.
  • Molly O’Shea’s – Delicious Irish comfort food with antique decor and featuring one of the best beer and whiskey menus found in the region.
  • Pearl Sushi Bar – Reminiscent of the finest sushi bars in New York or Los Angeles, this hip, intimate setting offers mesmerizing fresh sushi.
  • Timbers Buffet – A classic 300-seat buffet with a wide selection of foods among an endless series of stations. The decor pays tribute to the cultural heritage of the Mohegan Sun Tribe.
  • Pacer’s Clubhouse  – A delectable all-you-can-eat buffet overlooking the harness track at The Downs.
  • Electric City Roasting Company – Dedicated to coffee excellence through sustainability, traceability, and quality. Also serves sandwiches and pastries.
  • Johnny Rockets – A signature chain featuring feel-good American favorites with a retro-diner style.
  • Slice’d – Traditional New York pizza with classic flavors as well as sandwiches, salads, pastas and soups as well as delicious deserts.
  • Wetzel’s Pretzels – Pretzels, hot dogs, dipping sauces and lemonade – an American classic.
  • Ben & Jerry’s – Known world-wide for their delicious ice cream and inventive flavors.

…and quite a few bars, too!

Mohegan Sun Pocano has a selection of bars and clubs to match their array of dining options. Adult-style thirsts will not go unquenched here! Here’s what they have to offer:

  • Breakers – An eclectic and exciting club with high energy bartenders where you can find live music from local bands and great drink specials.
  • The Terrace – Located right off the hotel lobby, this relaxing outdoor bar has comfortable seating around a welcoming fire pit.
  • M Bar – This beautiful and intimate spot right across from the hotel lobby is the perfect place for meet and greets or watching the game.
  • Sunburst Bar – Located right at the center of the casino floor and elevated slightly above it. Flat screen TVs, top shelf liquors, and 33 video poker machines.
  • Starting Gate Bar – Set in the corner of the spacious Simulcast room and perfect for a cold beer or mixed drink.
  • Bean and Vine Cafe & Wine Bar – The name says it all – the finest coffees and wines in a peaceful setting and featuring live piano music on Friday and Saturday nights.

A resort should have shops, right?

As upscale resort destinations should, Mohegan Sun Pocano has some interesting and stylish retail shops to tempt and treat their guests:

  • MOGO – This specialty store offers a wide and fun array of unique logo items centered around the Mohegan Sun Pocano brand.
  • Marshall-Rousso – A high-end clothing store for women. Styles range from elegant evening wear to hip and casual.
  • Momentum Travel & Experiences – These travel experts will help you plan the trip of a lifetime in exquisite detail.
  • Ruby Blue – A woman’s accessory shop featuring jewelry, handbags, gift items and a million other “must have” items for fashion-istas.

After gaming, dining, drinking, and shopping, SLEEP.

Pennsylvania casinos come in two kinds: ones that have no hotel on site and ones that do. Mohegan Sun Pocano falls in the latter category and their hotel is a large and lovely four star tower that offers king bed rooms, double queen bed rooms, and a variety of suite configurations for all types of needs. They have a full-service spa, a fitness center, and a heated indoor pool.

Additionally, the rooms offer:

  • Plush bedding
  • iPad directories with daily newspaper downloads and TV control
  • Room service available
  • No Swipe – Tap & Go key system
  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Smart TVs
  • Express check-out available
  • Keurig coffee makers in the suites