Smith: It's the end of life B.C. (Before Casino)

We might store away a mental snapshot of life in Sonoma County before, at 10 a.m. today on Rohnert Park's western flank, a vast and fashionable casino swings open the doors it intends never to close.

We're in for changes. Time will reveal their magnitude.

The partners in Graton Resort & Casino have announced to all the Bay Area that as of today there's a slice of Las Vegas an easy and scenic drive to the north.

The state's newest and largest gambling palace bears scant resemblance to what many Californians envisioned in 1998 when they approved Prop. 5's call for expanded gaming "on Indian lands."

But never mind, the exhausting debate is over and today the casino off Golf Course Drive becomes operationally, undeniably real.

Let's hope the Graton Resort is a people-pleaser, the food is good.

So we hope for the best. Money will flow to casino employees and members of the Graton Rancheria, and to the local agencies to which the tribe has bestowed checks and promises.

May the casino's upside go a long ways toward balancing the downsides that have been debated for a decade.

100-YEAR WARRANTY: Charity Ferreira drove from Oakland on Monday to pick up three old kitchen chairs that she'd dropped off for refinishing months ago at Santa Rosa's landmark Pedersen's Furniture.

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