SPRINGFIELD - Friday was the day many New Englanders have been waiting for - the official grand opening of the MGM Springfield Casino.
Some have been saying it is competition for Mohegan and Foxwoods.
Crowds were populating by the second and there was a mixture of people from Massachusetts, New York and plenty of people from Connecticut.
Some earlybirds waited outside with hopes to get first dibs on the slot machines, the food and the drinks.
"Well this is like a family thing you know, a small place that you could spend more time I guess because this is not too big like the one in CT," said Rea Pasqua of Berlin.
Security was on high alert as they managed crowds inside and outside. Some people drove for hours to beat the early traffic while some were right next door and said the trip was well worth it.
"It is the first day but you could tell they’re really into the customers so I think it’s a big difference when it comes to that and people coming for the first time," said Rosemary Wong of Stratford.
Diane Halloran from Manchester said she spent most of her time at the slot machines, but wished she had a little more wiggle room.
"It’s a little smaller than I envisioned when they said the footage. I think that you’re kind of a little cramped in certain areas on the machines," said Halloran.
MGM Springfield was expected to shake up Mohegan and Foxwoods by offering a larger gambling area and a larger entertainment venue.
"Parking’s kind of you know ... need to be worked on and also .. I understand about the individuals coming in, it’s all about security but otherwise, you got some twerks here and to repair things," said Samuel Baldwin of Bridgeport.
"Oh it’s beautiful. It’s really crowded, really busy, it’s really nice, the food is delicious," said Iris DeLopez of Bridgeport.
"I’ve been to Foxwoods, I’ve been t Mohegan, and I said this is better. I do have to say that. The slots machine - there are more, they’re different, and I did hit a couple of bucks!" said Maria Valle of Bridgeport.
Just a couple of hours after the doors opened early Friday morning, there were thousands of people and that number is expected to double or triple by the end of the weekend.