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2018 World Series of Poker

The Big Pot of the 2018 World Series of Poker is displayed.

With all the talk of casino gaming expansion and legalized wagering on sports in Indiana and Illinois, the 50th World Series of Poker, which began on Tuesday of this week at the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas, will likely attract a good deal of attention from gamblers in the Region and across the country.

For half a century, the poker tournament festival has reigned supreme in the world of gambling. Just as everyone is a horse racing fan when the Kentucky Derby and Triple Crown season rolls along, so will people who have never given the turn of a card a second thought talk about the poker player who bluffed his way to a giant score.

An all-time record 123,865 entries from 104 countries were recorded for the 2018 World Series of Poker, creating $266,889,193 in prize money.

The average WSOP gold bracelet event, the standard of excellence by which poker players are judged, had a $3,421,656 prize pool with a life-changing $655,337 presented to the winner.

First held in 1970, the World Series of Poker stands proud as the longest-running poker tournament in the world with over $2.99 billion in prize money distributed to participants.

Dedicated poker rooms in Indiana are hot beds for cash games and tournament action. There is always a significant representation of players from the Region who travel to Las Vegas to participate in any number of the events that will be held every day through July 16.

You don’t have to be a high-roller to be a part of the action. Buy-ins for tournaments start as low as $70. Single table satellites and a variety of live poker games in the low, medium, and high limit range will be held 24 hours a day throughout the seven-week series which takes place in the Rio Convention Center.

Room reservations are accepted across the Caesars Las Vegas properties with special rates for Caesars Rewards members. For individual event online registration please visit wsop.com/registration/ .

One attraction that visitors won’t want to miss will be found in the rotunda area of the Rio Convention Center. It’s a $1,000,000 display of cash under the iconic Horseshoe, replicated for the golden anniversary of the World Series of Poker to pay homage to the famous display that WSOP founder Benny Binion created in downtown Las Vegas.

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In celebration of this 50th edition of the WSOP, $50,000 in Main Event seats (five in all) will be given away to loyal tournament players who are eligible to earn up to five entries for the July 1 drawing.

Players receive a complimentary entry by swiping their Caesars Rewards card at the Rio Caesars Rewards Center. Additional entries can be earned based on participation in gold bracelet events.

The Ladies No-Limit Hold’em Tournament, a gold bracelet event, will begin on Thursday, June 20. A warm-up tournament, a $150 buy-in No-Limit Hold’em tourney, will be held on June 19 starting at 6 p.m.

For senior players ages 50 and up, a special Deep Stack No-Limit Hold’em one-day tournament will be held every Wednesday through July 10 starting at 9 a.m.

BONUS ROUND-UP

BLUE CHIP: If you’ve been accumulating entries for the “Progressive Payout” drawings this month you won’t want to miss being present on Friday (May 31) for your chance to win one of three jackpots. There was a $15,000 grand jackpot winner in March. Five winners will draw for $3,000 at the 8 p.m. drawing, five winners will draw for $12,000 at the 9 p.m. drawing and 15 winners will draw for $30,000 at the 10 p.m. drawing. Each month, if there isn’t a winner, the first jackpot increases by $1,000, the second jackpot increases by $4,000, and the grand jackpot increases by $15,000 for the next month’s drawing. They’ll continue to roll over every month until October when all of the jackpots are guaranteed to be given away. Earn entries playing slots and table games. B Connected members receive one free entry into each month’s drawing.

FOUR WINDS: There are some fun activities next week leading up to the Four Winds Invitational which will be held at Blackthorn Golf Club in South Bend. The festivities begin on Monday (June 3) with the fifth annual nine-hole Daddy-Daughter Pro-Am Tournament starting at 5 p.m. (EDT). Each dad and daughter twosome will be joined by a future star of the LPGA. Hot dogs and ice cream will be served. Registration is $50 per player and $100 for a father-daughter team with all proceeds benefiting Beacon Children’s Hospital in South Bend. On Wednesday (June 5) the Ladies Golf 101 Clinic will take place from 5 to 7 p.m. It will feature instruction from LPGA Symetra professionals, practice, a champagne bar, appetizers, and a Q&A with Symetra players. Sponsored by The Inn at Saint Mary’s, Hampton Inn & Suites, Hilton Garden, and the Gillespie Conference Center, the cost is $40 person. Please visit fourwindsinvitational for registration information.

HORSESHOE: The month of June will feature a $5,000 trip giveaway. The grand prize is a trip to the Far East. Earn entries June 1 through 30. The finale will take place on June 30 with entry activation from 6 to 10:50 p.m. at the promotional kiosks in Le Cheng or the high limit tables. Winners will select an envelope at the 8 to 10 p.m. drawings for a chance to win up to $500 in free table play, or an iPad. The trip will be given away at the Le Cheng finale drawing at 11 p.m. Players receive one additional entry for every 25 tier credits earned from baccarat and Pai Gow play during the promotional period. Please visit the Caesar’s Rewards Center for complete details and information. A special opportunity to earn entries will take place on Sunday, June 30, when 8-times entries will be awarded from 6 a.m. to 10:45 p.m.

MAJESTIC STAR: The month-long $95,000 “Cruzes and Cruises” finale drawing is set for Friday (May 31). Four $300 Promo Cash winners will be drawn every hour from 6. to 9 p.m. The grand prize drawing at 10 p.m. will award a 2019 Chevy Cruze automobile and a cruise vacation to one winner. Please visit the Majestic Rewards Center for complete information.

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Opinions are solely those of the writer. Reach him at jgbrokopp1@gmail.com.

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