Popular celebrities are all over the televised poker tournaments these days. They play for charities and are driving up interest in poker for more and more fans. Fueled by these shows, there is growing interest in people wanting to host their own tournaments in their own homes and get into the thrill of the competition with friends, coworkers, and family.
Another popular trend is for charity organizations setting up a tournament to raise funds. If you or your club are leaning this way too, what do you really need to pull it off successfully? How much is it going to cost and is it worth it?
Particularly for a charity event but even for a private tournament, you need to have a casino atmosphere. Department store plastic poker chips and a cheap poker layout or blanket on a table are really not going to cut it. While this might be fine for a home poker game with a few friends, it would be a bit cheesy for a real game. But the cost dewapoker a poker table and casino chips can get a bit expensive.
Here are a few suggestions to help keep the costs down.
1. Folding Poker Tables: These are far less expensive than a permanent poker table. They still give you the casino look and feel you are looking for when playing, but you can fold them up when you are done with them and store them away for the next game or event. These tables have some great features like padded felt and armrests just like real casino tables. This gives them a more authentic sound and feel when the chips hit the table or splash the pot. Plus the armrests are great for those long tournament games to help keep the players comfortable.
2. Composite Poker Chips: To avoid the cheap plastic poker chip feel and sound, these are a great alternative but still reasonably priced. Composite chips are a mixture of clay and plastic. Clay is the the material used in actual casino poker chips to give them the texture and feel they have. By mixing the clay with plastic material, they are able to produce a somewhat similar feel. Another option that is even cheaper is to purchase ABS chips. These are made of a hard compressed plastic that is very durable and even lower cost than the composites, but they don’t stack quite as well. They are the favorites for most charity tournaments because of the realistic size, weight, and colorful casino markings, and their low price. Plus they are more durable than composites or clay poker chips.
3. Prizes: Not all the players need to win money. You can add a nice touch to the game by offering some poker themed prizes to the players that maybe didn’t do so well, or maybe even for the main winners. Plastic poker playing cards such as the Copag line make a great prize as well as poker bracelets, poker hats, and tee shirts.
On the high end, you could even offer a folding poker table or one of the many poker table tops as a prize to the winner. Some table tops can be had for under 50 or 60 dollars.
4. Poker Table Tops: If your club already has folding tables, a folding poker table top might be just what you need and be even cheaper than getting poker tables. Some of the premium tops even have padded felt and armrests just like the tables. A poker top does not have its’ own legs so needs to have a table it can be set on. Many poker clubs use these to keep their prices down. Additionally they even require less space to store them away.