The cardroom floor at The Gardens Casino in Hawaiian Gardens was buzzing once again on Monday, Oct. 5, the first day casino cardrooms throughout Los Angeles County were allowed to reopen outdoors and with limited capacity.
The parking lot sweltered on Monday, with temperatures surpassing 90 degrees. But it was at least 10 degrees cooler under the portico, where the casino converted its valet station into a gaming floor. Still, the summer conditions provided for a humid, somewhat tropical feel to the cardroom floor.
Though it was hot, the atmosphere was familiar. The buzz of soft conversations, shuffling cards and chips getting stacked and restacked by nervous gamblers filled the area. An occasional shout from a player in victory or defeat shattered the tranquility — and reminded those with chips out that big fortunes could still be won or lost.