Jimmie Walker, back in 1977.

Jimmie Walker, back in 1977. (January 15, 2013)

Seminole Casino Hollywood is finally admitting it’s a “Classic,” and it’s bringing in a familiar face to nail down the message.

Jimmie Walker, who played the dy-no-mite J.J. Evans on the 1970s TV show “Good Times,” will take the microphone 11 a.m. Thursday at the rechristened Seminole Casino Hollywood Classic, 4150 State Road 7, in Hollywood.

The casino opened in 1979 as a smoky bingo hall and has long been known as “classic” by locals and those in the casino industry — to differentiate it from the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino across the street. But Thursday’s celebration is the first time the casino will officially acknowledge the term.

To celebrate, the casino will give away free play all day, two Super Bowl tickets at noon and a Dodge Charger at 9:30 p.m. Bingo will begin at 11 a.m., and “timeless cocktails” will include a Yip Pip, Tom Collins and a Sloe Gin Fizz. The Sugarhill Gang also will perform. (I think I know what song they'll do.)


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Walker, who published a memoir last year titled “Dynomite! Good Times, Bad Times, Our Times,” has served as the MC at other Seminole celebrations, including the debut of blackjack at Classic and the Studz Poker Lounge’s grand opening at Seminole Casino Coconut Creek.

“I hope I bring something to the dance again this time,” he says, noting that he has no specific connection to the tribe, such as being a frequent gambler or frequent South Florida visitor. “They’ve just treated me wonderfully, and I hope to be working for them for many, many hundreds of years to come.”

The new name is Seminole Classic Casino (no Hollywood).