Posts Tagged ‘charity-poker’

Feelgood Summer Poker

Karina Jett charity tourney at Golden Nugget

by , Jun 2, 2010 | 4:54 pm

Friday, June 4
6 pm

Golden Nugget
Las Vegas

Buy-in: $220
Rebuys: $100

First place:

As you know, I’m not really watching much poker this summer; however, I am rather excited about finally getting to play a little, tournament-style — and Friday I’ll be doing just that in Karina Jett’s All-In 4 Autism Celebrity Charity Poker Tournament. There’s just something about a tax-deductible underlay that makes ridiculously fast and luck-based blind structures appealing.

I played last year, and with just a single rebuy, I actually cashed. Got a really nice gift bag with some coupons and not one, but two Full Tilt swag t-shirts. (I think I finished something like 30th place out of maybe 150?

But the awesomeness of the Vegas charity scene became clearly apparent to me not from any “celebs” at my table, but from a very drinky maniac a few seats to my left. He was playing terribly but without fear, putting in rebuy after rebuy and playing any two cards, which sometimes got there allowing him to take down a big pot.


Poker for a Good Cause

Notable charity scores for Katkin, Darfur, Full Tilt

by , Apr 18, 2010 | 3:58 am

Before it gets too late, big congrats to Pokerati blogger-player Jon Katkin, who took 2nd place out of 220ish in the Opportunity Village Celebrity Poker Tournament at Caesars Palace last Saturday.


Katkin bought in for a single $300 tax-deductible good-cause bullet, and with blinds rising quickly, maintained a 10-20 BB stack throughout to get to the final table. There, he knocked out Howard Lederer and outlasted Allen Cunningham to win $5,000, a week’s stay in a fancy-room suite at the Rio during the WSOP main event, and $1k in food comps at any of the restos there.

Read Katkin’s take on his own game as well as PokerGrump’s impromptu coverage of the event.


The Professor, The Prop Comic, and Saving Puppies

Red Carpet Coverage of Jen Harman Charity Tourney

by , Apr 14, 2010 | 3:11 am

Vegas fave Annie LePage and her lapddog playing poker at the Jen Harman SPCA fundraiser. Bijou seems to like their hand or is just hoping for a walk in the big blind.

There was a big charity event Tuesday night at the Venetian … part of their Deep Stacks II series … Jennifer Harman’s Charity Poker Tournament benefitting the Nevada SPCA. This has become one of the bigger Springtime celeb draws in poker, and is always a memorable shindig because of the presence of cute animals. You shoulda seen the look on the dealer’s face when Bijou (pictured here) jumped up and scampered around the table. I think half the players nearby were all cued up with jokes of “reraise!” and “floor!” had the pup, um, pushed a potty stack across the betting line.

Anyhow, I don’t know the numbers yet …I think it was actually smaller than in previous years, with 140something entries 30 minutes before late registration closed. But it really was a lot of fun … and the NSPCA seemed thrilled about the money the event was still raising, not to mention the number of rescued pets being adopted.

Pokerati Red Carpet Video


State of Kentucky Sues Full Tilt

+ UB throws a tourney for the Commonwealth

by , Apr 6, 2010 | 5:16 pm

So many socio-political hot-spots right now you’d think the 2010 WSOP were being played in the Paktika region of Afghanistan. Poker’s legal quandaries keep growing … as the industry’s longtime adversaries in Kentucky have filed suit against Pocket Kings, the alleged dba for Full Tilt.

Here’s the actual complaint, filed two weeks ago in Franklin Circuit Court. You’ll see they spell out a host of alleged infractions by Full Tilt according to Kentucky state law against the citizens of Kentucky. And thus, they’re seeking to have all rake and player losses refunded.


McDermott Bill Gets New Juice

States, tribes, foster kids promised slices of rev-share

by , Mar 26, 2010 | 5:58 pm

HR 2268, now HR 4976, aka the McDermott Bill, aka the Internet Gambling Regulation and Tax Enforcement Act of 2009 2010, got re-introduced yesterday … it’s pretty similar to IGRTEA 2009, with two key differences:

IGRTEA 2010 specifies money for states and tribes — 6 percent — and attaches a dollar amount for a specific beneficiary, roughly $1 billion a year for foster-care programs. It’s being pitched as a sin tax, really — a simple addition to the tax code to allow one more group of disadvantaged youth to still get its government cheese. But if that’s the road they’re going down, perhaps they should earmark the $1 billion/year these kids will get from as being for foster kids with cancer and cleft palettes? How can you be against helping foster children make that abused foster children with cancer and cleft palettes.

Here’s the actual bill itself. Just three co-sponsors out the gate, one of them being Barney Frank.


Poker Pros Win Big Humanitarian Award

Phil Gordon, Rafe Furst honored by cancer foundation

by , Mar 15, 2010 | 3:56 pm

The Prevent Cancer Foundation presented its 2nd Annual “Cancer Champion” award this weekend in Washington DC to two Full Tilt poker pros — Rafe Furst and Phil Gordon.

You be the judge … good poker face on Spencer Bachus (R-AL) as he and his wife congratulate Rafe and Phil for their good great work fighting cancer?

Perhaps one of poker’s staunchest political opponents is softening … Either that or it’s hard to oppose money for cancer, especially at an event sponsored by Pfizer.


More than Rumorati: Full Tilt Boycotting NAPT?

Branding Wars escalate

by , Feb 17, 2010 | 4:54 pm

Boycotting may be too strong a word … “avoiding” could work, as could “snubbing”, as could “pissing off its own players by telling them they can’t go.”

Supposedly, highly reliable sources are saying, Full Tilt brass in Ireland are telling Full Tilt-branded American (and non-American) pros that they are not allowed to play in the Venetian Deep Stacks main event … as it is part of the newly launched NAPT, presented by What, are you guys not buying their claim that Stars-dot-net is different than Stars-dot-com? Interesting …

We hinted that something was coming on The Poker Beat a couple weeks ago. Kudos to ESPN’s @GaryWise1 for digging up the confirmation on the above. Listen below to a 5-minute excerpt of the bubbling under.

Apparently, Howard Lederer really has stepped away from calling the operational shots at Tilt, and it’s totally news to Bitar & Co. that Full Tilt pros were ever stepping foot in non-Tilt branded events, such as the PCA (PokerStars) and Aruba (UB). Sure enough, the Hollywood snub at the Sharon Osborne Trash Talk Championship of the World (at the Hard Rock) charity tournament was a sign of more serious fissures in the poker world to come.

Kinda funny … because these sites have been so worried how a new Harrah’s-branded online gaming presence would negatively affect other online sites branding opportunities at the World Series of Poker, and now their reaction to the threat seems on track to becoming a self-fulfilling prophesy.


Shenanigans at Texas Charity Tourney?

by , Feb 8, 2010 | 11:29 am

We know little because we’re thousands of miles away, but why am I not shocked that what coulda been the greatest thing ever — poker that helps a bunch of kids on Super Bowl Sunday — has left at least a few people with a sour taste in their mouths?

I sent an email trying to find out how many people played, how much money was raised, and what celebs if any may have gone deep in the biggest freeroll in Texas history … but instead learned from Dallas CAN!, the charity who helped make it happen:

Went ok the poker company we partnered with did some things that were not right to help our charity and although we packed the place and paid up front for everything, we never saw a dime last night.

Biggest Poker Tournament in Texas History This Weekend?

Dallas Cowboys fundraiser offering WSOP main event seat to freeroll winner

by , Feb 4, 2010 | 5:33 am

There could be 1,000 players or more gathered in South Dallas this Sunday, just a few blocks from Dallas Police Headquarters btw, competing for a WSOP main event seat in what’s being advertised as the biggest “True Freeroll Texas Hold’em Poker Tournament” in history

The event is technically a charity fundraiser for the much-respected DallasCAN! Academies around a Super Bowl viewing party. Tons of non-poker stuff and prize giveaways going on — and the freeroll poker tournement just happens to be part of it.

It took them like 6 years to figure out how to pull this off in a fully legal way, Big ups to all things Texas poker for this. Though like a McDonald’s Monopoly game, no purchase is necessary, they do offer a VIP upgrade that includes, among many things, extra chips for players in the tournament.

It all goes down at Gilley’s, which has much experience pulling off large poker events, though possibly never one this size before, featuring current Dallas Cowboy stars and tea legends:

Join celebrity athlete hosts and Dallas Can! Academy the 2010 DFW Big Game Watching Party!

Door prizes, spirits, food and legendary athletes all come together for the kids at the Can! Academies.

Hosted by:
Jason Witten,
Randy White,
Drew Pearson,
Stephen McGee and
Jay Novacek.

Sunday – February 7, 2010
Gilley’s – 1135 S Lamar St
Dallas, TX 75215

Fan Fest: Noon – 4PM
Game Watching Party: 3 – 10PM
Doors open to VIP at 3PM

Click here for the official

Click below for details on the poker tournament itself — going around my old hometown stomping grounds via email. Should be a pretty fascinating mix of amateur poker types and major players in the Dallas area trying to win their way (via an arguably soft field in a challenging blind structure) into the other Big Game this summer:


Haitian Help’em

by , Jan 16, 2010 | 10:56 am

The entire world got a reminder about life, death, and nature this week … the Haiti earthquake gave us all at least a bit of pause to find ourselves, at least momentarily, caring about people we didn’t think we cared about.

We know how charitable poker players can be — it’s our one saving grace — and I’m sure at least a few of you have made donations already toward some humanitarian relief. PokerStars has set up “dummy tournaments” and accounts where players can transfer money to help the cause … funds the online poker site will match and send to the Red Cross. Likewise, Calvin Ayre has issued a $1 million matching-donation challenge to the entire online gambling industry.

With all the donating options out there — and the ever-present uncertainty over the difference between efficient humanitarian aid and exploitive charitable graft — I just wanted to weigh in and give a thumbs-up to one specific Haitian charity that I personally know does meaningful work AND has a little poker in its blood.

It’s called Project Medishare. They’re a bunch of doctors and volunteers who since 1995 have provided medical services, equipment, and training to some of the poorest villages in Haiti. Currently, they’re flying in trauma surgeons while helping coordinate relief with Haitian officials. And their chief blogger chronicling these efforts and helping drive online donations got her web-media start in poker.

photo: Jennifer Browning / 2006


Poker It Forward

by , Dec 28, 2009 | 1:57 pm

In Washington state, this video would be grounds for a criminal prosecution on par with with child molesting. But down south, in Portland, Oregon, it’s a super-feelgood story with online poker pro Dusty Schmidt (aka “Leatherass”) gambling for the homeless.

His schtick is playing for rent for the underprivileged, and ends up making $20k for the folks in the process:

RE: Las Vegas Charity Efforts Thriving Despite Economy?

by , Dec 20, 2009 | 6:57 pm

Lisa Wheeler, president of Greasie Wheels, a poker consultancy that specializes in charity events, says that actually, numbers are not up across the board at charity tourneys in Las Vegas and elsewhere, though thanks to a handful of players, they aren’t hurting like all get-out:

Though attendance is down, and charity poker tournament coordinators are constantly looking for creative ways to stimulate participation, poker players continue to be extremely charitable. Many who have experienced success over the years have often donated even more. It balances out the ones who are less able.

Las Vegas Poker Charity Efforts Thriving Despite Economy?

by , | 5:16 pm

The All In for Cerebral Palsy charity tourney ran last weekend at the Hard Rock … and as any event-planning fundraiser can tell you, it’s been a little unnerving in 2009 wondering if people will actually show up to support your cause.

This was a $500 buy-in event (with $200 rebuys, an auction, and silent auction to boot) … and in the end turned out to be an arguably successful second-annual event — raising more than $58k for the One Step Closer Foundation while bettering its inaugural bar of $44k. Some 91 players competed for an $18,500 prize pool — including yours truly, who was in on a freeroll, but couldn’t resist making a tax-deductible, charitable donation to keep playing at a fun table with a PPA friend, Dennis Phillips, a CP-suffering beneficiary, and Ken Davitian (the fat naked guy from Borat) … especially with Davitian and another actor (whom I recognized but couldn’t name) being the weakest players yet having the biggest stacks as the rebuy period was coming to a close.

Alas, QQ sometimes is < AK just minutes before the break. I shook off the tilt by wandering around with a (shaky) camera to give you a glimpse of All In for CP and the Las Vegas rounders who seem to continuously show up and spur donations via fun-times feelgood poker when called upon:


Jacob Zalewski Charity Tourney This Weekend

Go All-in for CP

by , Dec 9, 2009 | 6:58 pm

The charity poker season here in Vegas is in full holiday swing. And one of the bigger tournaments (celebrity-wise) is this Saturday — the second annual All In for CP at the Hard Rock. (More info here via Facebook.)

It has a $550 buy-in (with $200 rebuys through the first hour). Early RSVPs include the likes of Doyle Brunson and the usual crew of high-stakes Las Vegas charity-circuit rounders, along with Phil Laak, Sam Simon, Jennifer Tilly, and others. Here’s a video invitation from Tilly, with more details about the tournament itself.

This event is put on by everybody’s favorite omnipresent scooter-rider at the WSOP, Jacob Zalewski, and raises money for his One Step Closer Foundation’s fight to make life easier for Cerebral Palsey sufferers like Terrance, featured in the video below:

Reminder for Shronk tournament tonight on Full Tilt

by , Dec 6, 2009 | 12:02 am

Bumping as a reminder of tonight’s tournament:

Tournament ID: 121607994
Title: Justin Shronk Memorial Tourney
Game: NLHE
Buy-In: $5+$5
Starts: Sunday, December 6 at 18:00 server time (6 p.m. EST, 3 p.m PST)
Password: Justin Shronk

Half of the buyin goes towards the Justin Shronk Memorial Fund at the Temple University School of Communications And Theater (SCT).