The Origins of Dug’s Windjammer

The Record Courier has done the legwork to uncover the history of the “Landmark” Building that was demolished in south Carson last week. It was part of the “Dug’s Windjammer” project, an attempt to build a casino shaped like a sailing vessel. This building was going to be the lighthouse, and it was positioned to shine up Spooner Highway and catch the attention of people driving down from Tahoe. Captain Dug ran out of money and the project never came together.

In the late 1970s, Minden resident Dug Picking proposed a casino complex featuring a 345-foot long replica of a sailing ship with masts 200-feet high.

Dug’s Windjammer Casino was the dream of a world traveler who operated Dug’s West Indies restaurant in northern Carson City for nine years.

The building that was torn down was a replica of a lighthouse that would supposedly shine a light up Highway 50 to draw travelers.

Morrow said Picking and his wife, Connie Jo, divorced after the casino deal fell through, and Picking moved to Mexico before returning to Nevada, where he lived in Las Vegas.


  1. this man ripped off a lot of people with his “windjammer stocks” and then went belly up, i have no respect for him or any of his companys, including dougs west indies.

  2. I worked for Dug and George, his executive chef at the West Indies in my Jr and Sr years at Carson High. I remember the night when he sold the place and began planning the Windjammer. Dug was a popular guy, a bit windy with his tales but he had a way of making his customers feel special. He had a band of regulars every night. He was good to work for, the food was excellent and even the endless loop tape of Hawaiian music was welcome night after night. The guy Heinz he sold the place to was a putz, an alcoholic. I’m sorry the Windjammer fell through. I would have followed him there.

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