Spotlight 29 tic-tac-toe chicken ‘too ridiculous to believe’

May 10th, 2013 | by Brian Indrelunas | Comments
A billboard promoting Ginger the Tic-Tac-Toe-Playing Chicken at Spotlight 29 is seen April 27, 2010, along Vista Chino near Date Palm Drive in Cathedral City. (Brian Indrelunas, The Desert Sun)

Ginger was “bawk” at Spotlight 29 in 2010, as this Cathedral City billboard announced. (Brian Indrelunas, The Desert Sun)

It seems like just yesterday that Ginger the Tic-Tac-Toe Playing Chicken was “bawk” at Spotlight 29 Casino, thanks to the wall-to-wall TV spots that are forever lodged in my memory.

But three years after the traveling casino promotion‘s second appearance at the Coachella casino, it’s returned to the, well, spotlight on tech blog Gizmodo‘s list of “9 Casino Games Too Ridiculous To Believe.”

“Yes, in this game you have to beat a real animal—Ginger the chicken—in tic-tac-toe to win $10,000. For real,” Attila Nagy writes in his roundup of odd slot machines and one other animal-based game.

I must confess that I only know Ginger’s stop at Spotlight 29 made the list because KCLB’s Casey Dolan sent the link my way Friday after noticing yours truly atop the page.

Yes, that’s me matching wits with Ginger in the main photo labeled, “Yes. A chicken.” (I had posted photos of the encounter to Flickr and OK’d noncommercial use of ‘em.)

I lost, by the way, as did the Desert Sun copy editor who accompanied me to the casino in late April 2010 and is also pictured in the Gizmodo post.

But before the end of Ginger’s two-month stay in Coachella, she was defeated by Hong Sy of Los Angeles who not only scooped up $10K but also got to hold the vanquished fowl for a photo op:

Hong Sy of Los Angeles holds Ginger after beating the chicken in tic-tac-toe April 29, 2010, at Spotlight 29 Casino in Coachella. Sy had played the chicken "roughly six times" before beating the fowl, according to the casino. (Courtesy of Spotlight 29 Casino)

Hong Sy of Los Angeles holds Ginger after beating the chicken in tic-tac-toe April 29, 2010, at Spotlight 29 Casino in Coachella. Sy had played the chicken “roughly six times” before beating the fowl, according to the casino. (Courtesy of Spotlight 29 Casino)

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