TUNICA COUNTY, Miss. — For the first time since Harrah’s Casino Tunica closed in 2014, a business is now leasing 59 acres of the vacant complex.
It’s not a casino or a water park; it’s an auction company.
Nearly six years after the lights went out and all bets were off at the casino in Tunica in June 2014, Crenshaw Auction Company opened for business close to where the Harrah's Casino barge once docked.
"It opened our auction company to a lot more room," William Crenshaw said. "We have 59 acres of asphalt now."
Crenshaw has a five-year lease with the Yazoo-Mississippi Delta Levee District, which owns the property,
He said he needed the space to auction combines, tractors and other large, expensive farm equipment.
"To pull our former hill-style farmers and cattle farmers, all of them can come here," Crenshaw said. "It's just a central spot with a lot of room to work."
Under his lease agreement, Crenshaw must maintain and secure the property.
The hotel, once part of the casino, was on the chopping block to be demolished, but Crenshaw says it's been re-born as a training site for law enforcement.
"It's not what it once was, but it is alive again with drug dog training, bomb dog training, swat team training," he said.
His first auction Feb. 1 brought hundreds of farmers and on-lookers.
The attorney for the Levee District would not discuss details of the lease agreement.
Crenshaw's lease does not include the former Harrah's site where two large hotels still stand.