December 10, 2003

Jethro Bodine and the cursed land

They should have been working on Jethro’s casino by now. Instead the building is sitting as empty as ever, and now the headlines are saying Max Baer Jr. is suing his neighbors, who don’t want him to build the casino. It think the land is cursed; a quick look at the history of the lot shows a bunch of unhappy people.

It was an empty lot when Wal*Mart came to Carson City and built there. Because of a deal the city had made with a neighboring store, there were already restrictions on the land. No supermarkets could be built on the land, since it was inside the “no compete” zone Raley’s had negotiated for. But that was fine. Why would Wal*Mart want to build a supermarket?

Wal*Mart was soon joined by JC Penney and a little strip mall. The three owners entered into a pact that the center would only be used for retail. A “theater, bowling alley, nightclub or other place of recreation or amusement” was prohibited. This was fine with everyone. This was a shopping center, after all. Why would anyone want to build entertainment there?

Years later Wal*Mart decided it did want a supermarket. The company was in the process of transforming existing stores into Super Centers, and they wanted to do the same to Carson City. But there was that nasty little “no compete” zone to deal with. The city would not let Wal*Mat expand into a supermarket. So Wal*Mart hiked up its skirt and moved across the county line to build a brand shiny new Super Center. The old building sat deserted.

Max Baer Jr, having given up on his dream of building Jethro’s casino in Reno, bought the Wal*mart building, intending to transform it into his lifelong dream gambling palace. But then the other two owners, the ones who entered into the “retail-only” pact with Wal*Mart, cried foul. The building was still bound by the terms of that pact, they said, and a casino is a place of recreation and amusement. They won’t let Jethro build his casino.

So now Jethro’s in court. Everybody is suing everybody. Jethro wants his casino. The other folks want their quiet shopping center. I think the only winners out of this whole deal are Raleys, who engineered that “no compete” zone back when the whole place was nothing but sagebrush.

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  1. mrjerz says:

    The land history is great, but the problem most likely lies with Jethro himself. He has this little problem of failing to produce the cash he says he has. The man was a joke when he tried to build up here at park Lane Mall, and got run out of town. He is, however, good at getting people to believe him. when he got tossed here, there were people who thought it was the city/county/whatever that was against him, but later the whole world heard how he had duped everyone. Now he's suing, presumably to buy time, because he doesn't have the cash. It's too bad. the casino would be a cool addition to CC, but my money is on in never happening.

    Posted December 11, 2003 @ 3:53 pm
  2. Louise says:

    Max, this is terrible they won’t let you built your casino..sue them all!,, that is crazy on there part..We sure wished you could come down here in San Diego and build one,,My husband and I love casino’s !!! We love the Beverly Hillbillies show everyday in the morning from 5 to 6 …that was and is the best show..we wish you alot of luck in your lawsuit..Louise & Ed

    Posted April 11, 2007 @ 6:48 am

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