March 25, 2023
Annapolis, US 48 F

Riva Sports Betting Clears Hurdle, Community to Meet With Owners

Michael’s on the South River has applied for a license to convert the existing banquet hall into a sports betting facility. To do so, there are several hurdles, two of which have been satisfied.

Initially, the ownership needs to be vetted to ensure they have the financial wherewithal to finance the project and that they are responsible people with no serious delinquencies or legal action. After this was completed, it was passed to the SWARC (Sports Wagering Application Review Commission) to approve the project to move to the next step: approval from the Maryland State Lottery and Gaming Control Commission. Before approval, Kathe P. Hospitality will need to affiliate with an approved sportsbook.

Despite calls from neighbors to not approve the project, SWARC unanimously approved it on February 15, 2022 citing that it is not in their purview to address community concerns and only if the ownership and their ability to operate the facility.

There is a petition has been initiated by neighbors seeking to stop the project. The petition has collected about 1,800 signatures.

To address neighbors’ concerns, Kathe P Hospitality’s owners are holding a community meeting at the venue to explain the project and answer any questions concerning traffic, zoning, crime, and capacity. This meeting will be held on Monday evening, February 20, 2023 at 7:00pm. According to preliminary drawings on their website, the facility appears to seat approximately 130 people. It appears to be a typical sports bar-type layout except for several self-serve betting kiosks. Currently, Michael’s on the South River can accommodate events ranging from 100 to 225 people. It is important to note that this is NOT a casino and there does not appear to be any consideration for slot machines or table games.

This will be the second sports wagering facility in Anne Arundel County if approved. The first one was fanduel sportsbook at Live! Casino & Hotel in Hanover.

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