I know where I’ll be from Oct. 4 – 7, and it isn’t where you might expect. There was a convenient hole in my WSOP schedule during that time, with no big mixed-game events happening, and luckily, my pal Robbie Strazynski over at CardPlayer Lifestyle (and CardsChat podcast host) set up a mixed-game festival at the Westgate on exactly those days.
Robbie did a great job here. His festival has everything I’m looking for in this kind of event. It’s not at the Rio, so I get a break from the crowds and parking half a mile away from the door. The rake is low with a time charge of $7 per down. And there’s a HORSE tournament at the end with an added prize that should double the prize pool.
Platinum Pass bonus prize
That added prize comes in the form of a Platinum Pass from one of the festival’s sponsors, PokerStars. The Platinum Pass is good for five nights at a luxury hotel, $2,000 in travel expenses, and a buy-in to a $25,000 tournament. Kudos to Stars for stepping up and kicking in a huge bonus for this event.
The tournament itself is limited to 144 seats, which I’m sure will fill up given the added prize and, even with alternates, I can’t see more than about 175 people getting in before registration is closed. That would generate a prize pool, after fees and dealer appreciation of approximately $28,875, or about the same value as the platinum pass. The Platinum Pass does, in fact, double the prize pool.
I’ll be there taking pictures each day, and there will be a real mixed game celebrity (I just got lucky one time) each of the first three days. Those celebrities will include book signings by Dylan Linde and Eli Elezra, and a strategy Q&A with Jan Fisher and Linda Johnson. When I’m not taking photos, I’ll be splashing around in the cash games, and I’ll definitely get a spot early for the tournament.
Discounted room rates
If you want to play, you can also stay at the Westgate for $50 for the first three nights, and $80 on the final night, which is a bargain anytime, and a steal during the WSOP. The festival will start right before the major league baseball playoffs and the poker room is directly across from the world’s largest sportsbook, so bring a few extra bucks to back your favorite team.
If you want to brush up on your mixed games before the start of the WSOP, or if you’re already confident and just want to make some money in a nice room with a low rake and some freebies thrown in, come on down and I’ll see you at the tables.
If you want more information, we’ve provided full details on the festival, including a booking code for room rates and tournament structures.