Commerce Casino will Host a Facebook Fan Exclusive Tournament

"The Abyss" at Commerce Casino. 2-Day Tournament. Blinds don't increase for all of Day 1.

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Commerce Casino Poker Tournament Trip Report

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Free Casino Chips and Honest Online Casinos


An understanding of the relevance of free casino chips must certanly be put in its proper context: would be the offers of the free chips originating from honest online casinos?

The first online casinos opened 10 years back, and now you will find hundreds that are available online. Estimates vary regarding the number of people who gamble online, but recent estimates claim that a figure of around seven million worldwide would not be too much out. Taking that into account, and with a further estimate greater than $12 billion spent 먹튀검증 in online casinos alone (not including physical land-based casinos), offers of free casino chips may understandably be seen as something of a decline in the ocean.

Add to that the question of whether these free chips are now being provided by honest online casinos, and we enter a location worth some study or serious research.

Firstly, let's consider what these free casino chips are well worth to the individual online casino player. Free casino chips are of four main types:

No Deposit Bonus. This really is simply free money. Honest online casinos will offer free casino chips without any strings attached, simply to attract individuals to play at their virtual tables. There may sometimes be minor strings attached. As an example, the casino may ask for credit card details up front. Always read the terms.

Matching Deposit Bonus. This really is where the house will match your deposit. Often this is completed in multiples. As an example, a 200% bonus will mean that should you were to deposit $100 then a casino would add $200 in free casino chips to your account. Very nice! Especially ideal for new players starting out.

Uncashable Bonus. This is actually the so-called'sticky'bonus. This could never be cashed, but its usefulness lies in that fact that it stays in your account and allows you to utilize the bonus account to'leverage'higher wagers. These free casino chips stay latent in your account simply to allow you to do things which you otherwise could not.

Loyalty Bonus. This is often since it sounds. All honest online casinos, and offline ones too, want to keep hold of their good returning customers, and will offer loyalty bonuses, including free casino chips, as a result.

Understand that online casinos are able to afford to achieve this because they simply do not have the overhead that their brick and mortar land-based counterparts have. Equally, there's no excuse for an on line casino NOT to be honest for the same reason. They can offer free casino chips AND be an honest online casino in circumstances where their physical equivalents would get the financial burden impossible.

So how do we go about identifying which would be the honest online casinos and which are not? Well, a lot has changed since the first online casinos put up shop within their offshore locations in 1996. Self-regulation (at best dubious) generated accreditation of bodies like ECOGRA (E-Commerce Online Gaming Regulation and Assurance). Look out also for proof of good customer care, positive feedback from online casino forum members and decent helpline facilities. The more honest online casinos will offer (will actively boast) 24 hour live chat and live email support in addition to toll-free telephone help. Are there a mailing list you can join to keep in touch with the latest tournaments and special offers? Trust lies in the centre of any subscription process (or people would not subscribe) in order that by itself is a good indicator of an honest online casino.

Transparency of accounting systems is another good indicator of honest online casinos. When testimonials are published make sure that it is from higher than a pair of initials, and make sure they have circumstances or country. Free casino chips may be'virtual'in concept, but they are utilized by real people!
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Golden Star Casino 100 free spins no deposit bonus code

Golden Star Casino 100 free spins no deposit bonus code

Golden Star Casino Free Spins & Welcome Bonus
Open your account with Golden Star Casino and get 100 free spins no deposit required!!! Also, get a 100% welcome bonus plus 300 gratis spins on new slot machines. Enjoy 3000+ games, fast payouts and Bitcoin deposits!
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Golden Star Casino Full Review

Payment processing has always been the biggest strain on the online gambling industry. Changing regulatory environments have sent casinos into a tailspin when they find out their main source of deposits is suddenly not available to them. In other cases, when an online casino finds a company willing to take them on as a client, the rates they are charged are as close to robbery as can be; this ends up cutting margins down to a bare minimum, making running an online casino less of an enticing career move.
The introduction of crypto-currency over the last few years has shown some signs of promise in the online gaming space. As the general public gets more accustomed to the idea of Bitcoin and its uses, we will see it adopted across more traditional purchasing. The gaming industry has adopted the technology from the start, with several Bitcoin-only sites popping up in 2013 and beyond. Recently, many providers have added cryptocurrency to their traditional payment methods, offering special bonuses for players to use the option.
Golden Star Casino is one of the true hybrid casinos when it comes to payments. As you will see in the review, the casino has integrated Bitcoin into all facets of their operations, from games to payments to promotions. This is a great way for players who aren’t familiar with the product to be able to give it a try without committing to a Bitcoin-only site.

About Golden Star Casino

Golden Star Casino is owned and operated by Jubise International N.V. Casinos, a Curacao based company. Established in 2012, the company also has a gaming license from the Curacao Gaming Authority. This license isn’t exactly rock-solid for players; the country tends to turn a blind eye to company behavior until it is too late. With the license, however, Jubise is able to attract the payment processors and software vendors it needs to provide you with a positive gaming experience at their site.
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Who Can Play at Golden Star Casino?

Even though the company is licensed in Curacao, which would clearly give the impression that they would take players from the U.S., Golden Star doesn’t allow Americans to deposit or gamble. Well, actually… there is a way, but you need to be aware of what you are getting into. It seems that U.S. players who use Bitcoin to deposit can actually create real money accounts and play at the tables. However, there have been several instances of players trying to withdraw their funds which, once it was determined they were in the U.S., had those funds confiscated and accounts closed. It is hard to say if you can withdraw right into your Bitcoin account without it being detected, but for the time being, I do not advise you try this from the States unless you are willing to take the risk that your deposit may be taken away from you.
As for other restricted countries, here is the list:
  • United Kingdom
  • Spain
  • United States
Also, please bear in mind that certain software suppliers restrict what countries are allowed to access their games. As a result, you may find some of the games written about in this review are not actually available in your country. The best thing to do is to create an account, and you will be able to see all the options for your casino play.

Software Suppliers

As mentioned, Golden Star has chosen to work with several software partners for their brand. This is excellent news for you; the company has chosen a broad spectrum of vendors including some of the most prestigious in the industry. You can find games from the following companies currently at Golden Star Casino:
  • Microgaming
  • Betsoft
  • Net Entertainment
  • iSoftBet
  • Endorphina
  • Ezugi
  • Amatic
  • SoftSwiss
  • Quickfire
  • Belatra
  • Pragmatic Play
The casino games at Golden Star are available in a no-download format, meaning you can play them instantly through your browser. Many of the games are also formatted to be able to be played on most mobile phones or tablets, allowing you to take your casino experience on the move with you no matter where you are.
>> Claim Your Free Spins Bonus <<

The Good Stuff

Jackpots

I love a casino that not only has several progressive jackpots available for its players but one who isn’t shy about telling you who has won them. At Golden Star, you can select from over 20 different jackpot games, and if you look on their jackpots page, there is a scrolling bar of recent winners; no one like to see that a jackpot isn’t paying out. Give some of their jackpot games a go if you want to get a little something extra out of your slots experience.

Bitcoin Slots

This is an interesting option for players; there are slots in the casino lobby that are designed for Bitcoin-only play. Why would a casino do this? Well, with the fluctuating value of Bitcoin these days, players may not want to get hosed on exchange rates. Also, this is an excellent way to have players learn about Bitcoin by having to think regarding the cryptocurrency throughout their entire casino experience.
Satoshi’s Secret is the most popular Bitcoin game in the industry, and you can try it at Golden Star Casino for free if you like to get a feel for the slot machine.

The Bad Stuff

Complaints about Terms and Conditions

No one likes to see complaints about an online casino, and many times I can dismiss them as individuals who are just upset that they lost their money. However, there are recurring concerns about the changing Terms and Conditions at Golden Star Casino. The company denies that they have made any changes without letting their players know, and have taken a strong stance on that accusation. I will continue to monitor that situation; if I find it to be actually happening, then it will be a big strike against the casino.

Games limited by Country

I’ll add this to the Bad Stuff because I live in Canada, and as a result, I am not able to access some of the better games that Golden Star Casino has on their site. While I totally understand why the casino isn’t allowed to offer all their games to all their players, it would be beneficial to have this information laid out in a clear manner somewhere on their website. I would much rather know going in instead of reading a review like this only to find out a game I love is not available when I make my deposit.

Game Selection

As I mentioned, you will find over 900 games at Golden Star Casino. I am going to take a look at all the different categories in more detail for you now.

Slots

It isn’t surprising to hear that the majority of available games in the Golden Star Casino lobby are slots games – this goes for almost every casino in the industry, whether online or land-based. However, having the multiple providers allows this casino to provide you several different looks to their slots catalog. They range from the fantastic content of the Microgaming slots to the 3D slot games that made Betsoft famous.

Table Games

The table games options at Golden Star Casino are a bit underwhelming considering how many suppliers the company has partnered with. Now, I may be missing some of the table games because of where I am reviewing the site from; all accounts are that they aren’t using Microgaming or NetEnt for games outside North America.

Video Poker

Along the same theme, there aren’t as many video poker variants as I would like to see at Golden Star Casino. I know that I am in the minority when it comes to video poker; I like the game more than most people do. Still, an online casino should easily be able to offer as many games as they can. Maybe they will read this review and add some from their vendors; I know they are available!

Specialty Games

One area where Golden Star Casino has apparently spent some time in development is in the Specialty Games offering. Using their partners like Quickfire, the casino gives you many different types of games to play that are not like the typical table games and slots. Many of these games have worse chances of coming out a winner, but I always consider them to be a nice way to take a break from a long session at the Blackjack table.

Live Dealer

Golden Star Casino has selected Ezugi as their Live Dealer provider. While the studios and dealers used by Ezugi are quite nice, there isn’t much in the way of selection from a games perspective. You can play the following games via the Live Dealer function:
  • Bet on Numbers (Bingo variant)
  • Keno
  • Blackjack
  • Roulette
>> Claim Your Free Spins Bonus <<

PROMOTIONS

The promotions at Golden Star are pretty bland overall. They are focused on the deposit bonuses as their primary form of attracting to you to their brand. Here is an overview of the bonuses currently available on the website:

First Deposit Bonus

  • 100% up to €100 or 100 mBTC + 100 FREE SPINS
Make your first deposit in Golden Star Casino and get up to €100 or 100 mBTC and 100 free spins in the Lucky Sweets slot

Second Deposit Bonus

  • 75% up to €100 or 100 mBTC
Keep having fun! Make your second deposit, and we will refill your balance up to €100 or 100 mBTC.

Third Deposit Bonus

  • 50% up to €100 or 100 mBTC
More and more bonuses for you! Get up to €100 or 100 mBTC on third deposit!
The company does have one ongoing bonus for players who play on the weekend. They have a “Have A Nice Weekend” recurring bonus of 50% up to $50 or 50 mBTC.
Overall, it is pretty disappointing to see no leaderboard or jackpot promotions, especially given how many games they could use for these types of offers.

Tournaments

Golden Star Casino does have a large selection of tournaments running on a daily and weekly basis. For someone who gets bored with slots play pretty quickly, I enjoy the tournament concept; if I go on a long run, I can make some additional cash, and it is the only way I actually see any other screen names while I am at the casino.
>> Claim Your Free Spins Bonus <<

Banking

As I have discussed many times in this review, the company seems to be very focused on making you a Bitcoin user, offering special games and bonuses for players who use the cryptocurrency. Golden Star does also have traditional payment methods available to its players; of course, each will be restricted by what countries are available. The most up-to-date payment methods for your country will be listed in the cashier section of the lobby after you login to your account.

Deposit Methods

  • MasterCard
  • Neteller
  • Visa
  • iDEAL
  • Sofortuberwaisung
  • QIWI
  • Trustly
  • Skrill
  • Yandex Money
  • Sberbank Online
  • Cubits
  • Comepay
  • Mobile Commerce

Withdrawal Methods

  • Bank Wire Transfer
  • Neteller
  • Visa
  • iDEAL
  • QIWI
  • Skrill
  • Trustly
  • Yandex Money
  • Cubits
  • Comepay
  • Evroset
  • Mobile Commerce
  • Sberbank

Comp/VIP Program

Golden Star Casino does offer its players a hybrid Comp/VIP program. In essence, this is a comp program that has tiers to it, giving you more enticing conversion rates for your comp points. While I am a big fan of casinos that give you comp points that you can cash in for real money, I am disappointed that there isn’t more to the VIP part of the program. I am hopeful that there is a more individual program that they just don’t advertise.
Here are the levels of the system and what conversion rates come with each level.
  • New Star – (0-149 CP) – no exchange
  • Bronze – (150-999 CP) – 14:1 Exchange
  • Silver – (1000-4999 CP) – 13:1 Exchange
  • Golden – (5000-14,999 CP) – 12:1 Exchange
  • Platinum – (15,000-29,999 CP) – 11:1 Exchange
  • Diamond – (30,000 CP) – 10:1 Exchange

Customer Service

Customer Service at Golden Star is available three ways: a web form on the Support page of their website, email or Live Chat. There is no phone number to reach the casino at this point; the only way to get a hold of them in real time is via the Live Chat function.
>> Claim Your Free Spins Bonus <<
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Commerce Casino to reopen Friday June 19th...🤔

Commerce Casino is the world's largest poker room and they just announced they are going to reopen this Friday. Tournaments are off but cash games are offered 8-max with plexiglass.
It is my local casino but i don't know to be honest. Still way too many in too close proximity. But I admit i miss those stereotypical degens that call 3 people's all in with Q6 offsuit....and win! Been playing too decent poker online lately.
But there is no word what they gonna do with the super degens, the 1-800-Gambler type that "lives" in the casino and sleeps on empty tables etc.
Any LA people actually going this weekend?
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[Serious] Long(ish) Cali trip planned. Need some help

The wife and I are planning a trip to California late February. Interested in any suggested casinos or good local spots for poker. Also if anyone has any must do type of ideas. This is my first West Coast trip honestly and she does not mind me putting in a full day or two for poker. We are planning on being in Cali for two full weeks starting North and working our way down South. Cheers!
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What's happening around town (Wed, Jan 1st - Tue, Jan 7th)

Oklahoma City's event list.

Ongoing

Wednesday, Jan 1st

  • 🍴 Anthem Drown Night! (HiLo Club - Oklahoma City) Our local friends at Anthem Brewing Co. have some great beers! Every Wednesday night from 9pm to close enjoy $8 Drown Night! Their Power Pils will be flowing!
  • Chamber Ambassador Meeting (Del City Chamber of Commerce - Oklahoma City) Start Time: 8:30am
  • Downs Family Christmas Lights (Down's Family Christmas Light Ministry - Norman) Last Day The Downs Family Christmas Lights in Norman is one of the most spectacular light displays at a private residence in…
  • Edmond Electric's Luminance 2019 (Mitch Park - Edmond) Thru Sun, Jan 5th The Second Annual Luminance is the a walk-thru holiday light display that will be open to the public from November 23 - January 5. This year, there will be 30 three dimensional displays for visitors to enjoy. Additionally, visitors can visit the adjacent Edmond Outdoor Ice Rink. Both attractions are made possible by Presenting Sponsor Edmond…
  • Edmond Electric's Luminance - An Enchanted Stroll (Mitch Park - Edmond) Thru Sun, Jan 5th Experience the joy of the holidays during Edmond Electric's Luminance - An Enchanted Stroll. This new walk-through…
  • Holiday in the Park (Starlight Amphitheater @ Frontier City - Oklahoma City) Thru Sun, Jan 5th Experience the magic of a million lights sparkling throughout Frontier City Theme Park. At the annual Holiday in the Park…
  • Illuminations: Starry Starry Night (Crystal Bridge - Oklahoma City) Thru Sun, Jan 5th Immerse yourself in stunning light installations illuminating the night at the Crystal Bridge Conservatory in…
  • 🎡 LifeShare WinterFest (Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark - Oklahoma City) Thru Sat, Jan 4th Start Time: 12:00pm Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark is being transformed into a Winter Wonderland! Don't miss out on all of the fun of sliding down the largest manmade slope in the region in a custom snow tube. Single session tickets are available for $14. Tickets are available for groups of 10 or more and are available to purchase in advance for $11 per person.…
  • Edmond Outdoor Ice Rink (Mitch Park - Edmond) Thru Sun, Jan 5th Enjoy holiday ice skating in Mitch Park at the Edmond Outdoor Ice Rink. Glide around the 117ft. x 56ft. under clear,…

Thursday, Jan 2nd

  • Edmond Electric's Luminance 2019 (Mitch Park - Edmond) Thru Sun, Jan 5th The Second Annual Luminance is the a walk-thru holiday light display that will be open to the public from November 23 - January 5. This year, there will be 30 three dimensional displays for visitors to enjoy. Additionally, visitors can visit the adjacent Edmond Outdoor Ice Rink. Both attractions are made possible by Presenting Sponsor Edmond…
  • Edmond Electric's Luminance - An Enchanted Stroll (Mitch Park - Edmond) Thru Sun, Jan 5th Experience the joy of the holidays during Edmond Electric's Luminance - An Enchanted Stroll. This new walk-through…
  • Holiday in the Park (Starlight Amphitheater @ Frontier City - Oklahoma City) Thru Sun, Jan 5th Experience the magic of a million lights sparkling throughout Frontier City Theme Park. At the annual Holiday in the Park…
  • Illuminations: Starry Starry Night (Crystal Bridge - Oklahoma City) Thru Sun, Jan 5th Immerse yourself in stunning light installations illuminating the night at the Crystal Bridge Conservatory in…
  • 🎡 LifeShare WinterFest (Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark - Oklahoma City) Thru Sat, Jan 4th Start Time: 12:00pm Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark is being transformed into a Winter Wonderland! Don't miss out on all of the fun of sliding down the largest manmade slope in the region in a custom snow tube. Single session tickets are available for $14. Tickets are available for groups of 10 or more and are available to purchase in advance for $11 per person.…
  • Edmond Outdoor Ice Rink (Mitch Park - Edmond) Thru Sun, Jan 5th Enjoy holiday ice skating in Mitch Park at the Edmond Outdoor Ice Rink. Glide around the 117ft. x 56ft. under clear,…
  • 😂 Tony Tone (Loony Bin Comedy Club - Oklahoma City) Thru Sat, Jan 4th

Friday, Jan 3rd

  • DelQuest Committee Meeting (Don's Alley - Oklahoma City) Start Time: 8:00am
  • Edmond Electric's Luminance 2019 (Mitch Park - Edmond) Thru Sun, Jan 5th The Second Annual Luminance is the a walk-thru holiday light display that will be open to the public from November 23 - January 5. This year, there will be 30 three dimensional displays for visitors to enjoy. Additionally, visitors can visit the adjacent Edmond Outdoor Ice Rink. Both attractions are made possible by Presenting Sponsor Edmond…
  • Edmond Electric's Luminance - An Enchanted Stroll (Mitch Park - Edmond) Thru Sun, Jan 5th Experience the joy of the holidays during Edmond Electric's Luminance - An Enchanted Stroll. This new walk-through…
  • Holiday in the Park (Starlight Amphitheater @ Frontier City - Oklahoma City) Thru Sun, Jan 5th Experience the magic of a million lights sparkling throughout Frontier City Theme Park. At the annual Holiday in the Park…
  • Illuminations: Starry Starry Night (Crystal Bridge - Oklahoma City) Thru Sun, Jan 5th Immerse yourself in stunning light installations illuminating the night at the Crystal Bridge Conservatory in…
  • 🎡 LifeShare WinterFest (Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark - Oklahoma City) 1 day left Start Time: 12:00pm Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark is being transformed into a Winter Wonderland! Don't miss out on all of the fun of sliding down the largest manmade slope in the region in a custom snow tube. Single session tickets are available for $14. Tickets are available for groups of 10 or more and are available to purchase in advance for $11 per person.…
  • 😂 Open Mic Night (Don Quixote Club - Oklahoma City) Start Time: 8:00pm Every Friday is Open Mic Comedy at Don Quixote's! Laugh with local talent as they hone their skills. Are you funny? Sign up at 7:30. See you this week!
  • Edmond Outdoor Ice Rink (Mitch Park - Edmond) Thru Sun, Jan 5th Enjoy holiday ice skating in Mitch Park at the Edmond Outdoor Ice Rink. Glide around the 117ft. x 56ft. under clear,…
  • 🏃 Paseo First Friday Gallery Walk (Paseo - Oklahoma City) Start Time: 6:00pm The First Friday gallery walk is held on the first Friday and Saturday of every month. The walk starts on Friday at 6pm and lasts until 10pm and on Saturday from 12pm to 5pm. Over 60 artists in more than 17 galleries participate, all within walking distance. Four to six Art Opening Receptions on Friday night showcase the new work of the…
  • 😂 Tony Tone (Loony Bin Comedy Club - Oklahoma City) 1 day left

Saturday, Jan 4th

  • 2019 Downs Family Christmas Lights (Down's Family Christmas Light Ministry - Norman) Start Time: 6:00pm
  • 🏆 Central OK: University of Central Oklahoma Men's Basketball vs Central Missouri (Edmond) Start Time: 3:30pm University of Central Oklahoma Men's Basketball vs Central Missouri https://www.bronchosports.com/calendar.aspx?id=6505
  • 🏆 Central OK: University of Central Oklahoma Women's Basketball vs Central Missouri (Edmond) Start Time: 1:30pm University of Central Oklahoma Women's Basketball vs Central Missouri https://www.bronchosports.com/calendar.aspx?id=6535
  • Edmond Electric's Luminance 2019 (Mitch Park - Edmond) 1 day left The Second Annual Luminance is the a walk-thru holiday light display that will be open to the public from November 23 - January 5. This year, there will be 30 three dimensional displays for visitors to enjoy. Additionally, visitors can visit the adjacent Edmond Outdoor Ice Rink. Both attractions are made possible by Presenting Sponsor Edmond…
  • Edmond Electric's Luminance - An Enchanted Stroll (Mitch Park - Edmond) 1 day left Experience the joy of the holidays during Edmond Electric's Luminance - An Enchanted Stroll. This new walk-through…
  • Holiday in the Park (Starlight Amphitheater @ Frontier City - Oklahoma City) 1 day left Experience the magic of a million lights sparkling throughout Frontier City Theme Park. At the annual Holiday in the Park…
  • Illuminations: Starry Starry Night (Crystal Bridge - Oklahoma City) 1 day left Immerse yourself in stunning light installations illuminating the night at the Crystal Bridge Conservatory in…
  • 🏆 Learn to Curl at Devon Ice Rink at Myriad Gardens (Myriad Botanical Gardens - Oklahoma City) Bring your family and friends and join Oklahoma Curling Club members as they walk through the etiquette and rules of curling. Dress warm, wear rubber soled shoes, and prepare for a fun morning on the ice. All other equipment will be provided. Book now before it sells out! Saturdays, 9am-10:30am November 23 December 7, December 21 January 4, and…
  • 🎡 LifeShare WinterFest (Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark - Oklahoma City) Last Day Start Time: 12:00pm Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark is being transformed into a Winter Wonderland! Don't miss out on all of the fun of sliding down the largest manmade slope in the region in a custom snow tube. Single session tickets are available for $14. Tickets are available for groups of 10 or more and are available to purchase in advance for $11 per person.…
  • 🎓 Managing Stress and Raja Yoga Meditation- a day course (Brahma Kumaris Meditation Center - Edmond) Start Time: 12:00pm Taking time out has always been a vital part of improving the quality of life, refreshing our understanding of events and re-charging the spirit. A day Retreat is an opportunity to step off the conveyor belt of life and spend time in a peaceful and spiritual atmosphere, reflecting upon and exploring the important factors governing our…
  • Edmond Outdoor Ice Rink (Mitch Park - Edmond) 1 day left Enjoy holiday ice skating in Mitch Park at the Edmond Outdoor Ice Rink. Glide around the 117ft. x 56ft. under clear,…
  • Teen Library Council (Guthrie Library - Guthrie) Start Time: 10:00am TLC is a group of teenage volunteers. Our purpose is to create teen library events that appeal to Guthrie teenagers. If you are interested in joining, please register to be a member of TLC at the library Circulation Desk. ChooseGuthrie The City of Guthrie, OK - Municipal Government Real Talk Around Guthrie Guthrie Chamber of Commerce
  • 😂 Tony Tone (Loony Bin Comedy Club - Oklahoma City) Last Day
  • Travis LeDoyt (Riverwind Casino - Norman) Start Time: 7:00pm Travis LeDoyt is known as “the world’s best” at portraying young Elvis Presley in his prime in the 50s and 60s. His uncanny resemblance to the “King of Rock and Roll” has audiences gasping when he takes the stage. Once he begins to sing and dance, fans are truly captivated by the authenticity of LeDoyt’s performance, even garnering…
  • Vox Squadron (Red Brick Bar - Norman) Start Time: 10:00pm The Vox Squadron returns to our home away from home at the Red Brick Bar in Norman. We are celebrating the release of our sophomore record "Oklahoma Skies" recorded at Sun Studio in Memphis. We absolutely love playing there and can't wait to come back!

Sunday, Jan 5th

  • Edmond Electric's Luminance 2019 (Mitch Park - Edmond) Last Day The Second Annual Luminance is the a walk-thru holiday light display that will be open to the public from November 23 - January 5. This year, there will be 30 three dimensional displays for visitors to enjoy. Additionally, visitors can visit the adjacent Edmond Outdoor Ice Rink. Both attractions are made possible by Presenting Sponsor Edmond…
  • Edmond Electric's Luminance - An Enchanted Stroll (Mitch Park - Edmond) Last Day Experience the joy of the holidays during Edmond Electric's Luminance - An Enchanted Stroll. This new walk-through…
  • Holiday in the Park (Starlight Amphitheater @ Frontier City - Oklahoma City) Last Day Experience the magic of a million lights sparkling throughout Frontier City Theme Park. At the annual Holiday in the Park…
  • Illuminations: Starry Starry Night (Crystal Bridge - Oklahoma City) Last Day Immerse yourself in stunning light installations illuminating the night at the Crystal Bridge Conservatory in…
  • 🎨 Okie Show Show Season 4 Launch Party (The Paramount OKC - Oklahoma City) Start Time: 5:00pm Come celebrate the premiere of Okie Show Show's season 4! Featuring drink specials, games, and a Q&A with the podcast hosts and writer's team. Then stick around after for the Paramount Room's weekly open mic.
    www.okieshowshow.com
  • Edmond Outdoor Ice Rink (Mitch Park - Edmond) Last Day Enjoy holiday ice skating in Mitch Park at the Edmond Outdoor Ice Rink. Glide around the 117ft. x 56ft. under clear,…
  • Vanilla Sugar (Red Brick Bar - Norman) Start Time: 8:00pm Free Show! More Bands TBA

Monday, Jan 6th

  • 🏆 Central OK: University of Central Oklahoma Men's Basketball vs Lincoln (Edmond) Start Time: 7:30pm University of Central Oklahoma Men's Basketball vs Lincoln https://www.bronchosports.com/calendar.aspx?id=6506
  • 🏆 Central OK: University of Central Oklahoma Women's Basketball vs Lincoln (Edmond) Start Time: 5:30pm University of Central Oklahoma Women's Basketball vs Lincoln https://www.bronchosports.com/calendar.aspx?id=6536
  • 🎭 Hoops with Hooplahoma! (Norman Public Library - Norman) In this interactive program, Chelsea of Hooplahoma teaches kids things like spatial awareness and coordination through creative play with hoops! This presentation also emphasizes the value of practice, being okay with making mistakes, and persistence through failure. Chelsea will also give an inspiring circus performance that is sure to amaze…
  • 🎓 Oklahoma Hospitality Club (Gaillardia Country Club - Oklahoma City) Start Time: 12:00pm Celebrating 95 Years of Service and Philanthropy. Accepting new members!!!! Contact: [email protected]
  • 🏆 WWE Monday Night Raw (Chesapeake Energy Arena - Oklahoma City) Start Time: 6:30pm Sale Dates and Times: Public Onsale : Fri, 8 Nov 2019 at 10:00 AM OKC Thunder Tuesday Presale : Tue, 5 Nov 2019 at 10:00 AM WWE Package Presale : Tue, 5 Nov 2019 at 10:00 AM Me + 3 Promotional Offer : Mon, 11 Nov 2019 at 10:00 AM Venue/Radio Presale Offers : Wed, 6 Nov 2019 at 10:00 AM WWE Package Onsale : Fri, 8 Nov 2019 at 10:00 AM Platinum…

Tuesday, Jan 7th

  • 🎨 Oklahoma City Blue vs. Austin Spurs (Cox Convention Center - Oklahoma City) Start Time: 7:00pm Sale Dates and Times: Public Onsale : Thu, 3 Oct 2019 at 10:00 AM
  • 🎓 Botanical Balance FREE YOGA (Myriad Botanical Gardens - Oklahoma City) Start Time: 6:00pm Presented by Fowler Toyota, sponsored by Tinker Federal Credit Union and Stephenson Cancer Center Tuesdays 6 pm and Saturdays, 8 am Bring a mat, water Instructors from YMCA Recommended for ages 16&Up
    Practicing yoga in the Gardens has the added benefit of connecting you with nature. The Gardens offer a space of beauty and tranquility to help…
  • 🏆 Tuesday Pool Tournament (Red Brick Bar - Norman) Start Time: 7:00pm Pool Tournament $10.00 Buy In 7pm Sign In 8pm Start 21 To Enter, ID Required
  • Women and Bladder Control (Edmond Senior Center - Edmond) Start Time: 10:00am Malarie Jackson, APRN-CNP and Michelle Wild, Crossway Medical Clinic, will discuss the myth that women have to just live with the disruptive and often embarrassing symptoms of urinary incontinence .They will also discuss the causes and treatment options to restore an active lifestyle and overall quality of life.

See Also

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Three New Expansion Ideas (Warning: Long)

I’ve been playing this game for a long time and browsing the Paradox forums and Cities: Skylines reddit for about as long. I love the game and I love what the devs are adding, I’ve bought just about every DLC because it’s all been very worthwhile, especially as of late. Contrary to what many may think, I still believe there’s much potential for new game content, and I’d like to see the game expanded to its full potential. As such, I have three ideas here for future expansion packs which I think will enhance the game tremendously. My goal is to foster discussion so please leave your thoughts in the comments below.
Many ideas are borrowed from the following people to increase exposure, make sure you read and comment on their original posts as well:
Zerotheliger – https://forum.paradoxplaza.com/foru...dlc-casinos-beach-and-golf-long-read.1179681/
Devan0848 - https://forum.paradoxplaza.com/forum/index.php?threads/maritime-dlc.1184941/
Erls - https://forum.paradoxplaza.com/forum/index.php?threads/city-council-dlc-proposal.1236693/
ISLAND CITIES
I feel like the biggest thing lacking in the game currently is a way to spruce up the coastlines. As such, I feel the next DLC should be centered on expanding everything related to water and beaches. Despite the name “Island Cities”, most of the features in this pack can be applied to any map with a body of water.
Marinas - New park buildings that dramatically increase the land value and happiness surrounding them and need to be placed connected to water. When placed, pedestrian boats will spawn from them and autonomously sail in the waters connected to it, filling the sea with life. There could be multiple tiers of marinas, earlier ones spawning fishing boats and sailboats while more expensive variants spawn whale-watching boats, houseboats, and finally yachts. Most Marina buildings have nodes that allow you to connect Boardwalks to them (see below).
Boardwalks - A new network path introduced in the expansion, available for pedestrian use only but it has a few special mechanics. For one, they can be zoned on, so houses can be built connected to them though obviously the cars of the people who own the houses would have to be parked on the nearest actual road. Secondly, when built at sea like bridges, pedestrian boats launched from Marinas can park at the sides of them much like cars do on land-based roads, allowing boardwalks to function as docks as well.
Promenades - New network path designed to look good next to quays and coastlines, with fancy tiling and trees lining the paths. They come in two variants: a purely pedestrian promenade, and a wider promenade still designed primarily for pedestrian use but allows cars to traverse slowly down the middle lane. Idea borrowed from the Network Extension mod.
Beaches - New park designation like the ones introduced in Park Life (I know some are tired of this mechanic, but I think it’s a great way to give creators more control over their cities) designed for use on coastlines. Beach paths blend in well with the sand to connect building to building, and park buildings such as bonfires, surfing spots, dune buggy tracks and large coastal resorts increase the attractiveness of the park. Props such as tents, towels, vending machines and parasols help complete the look. Policies are included to limit littering and the hours the beach is open.
Landscaping - New rocks, tropical plants, and coral reefs are added to spruce up the coast, both above and below the water (Maybe some bioluminescent coral so the water glows at night)? Sand can now be placed from the landscaping editor in-game. Owners of Snowfall will be able to do the same with snow, to designate colder areas such as mountaintops- it will still rain in snowy areas, but trees placed on snow will appear to have snow on their leaves.
New Commercial Specialization - Commercial districts can now be specialized as Seaside Commercial and will cause low-density commercial to develop into surf shops, seafood restaurants and tiki bars. They will increase in attractiveness when placed close to water (and be less attractive than regular commercial when placed away from water) and bring in tourists. The Tourism specialization from After Dark will now be a purely high-density specialization that creates large hotels, and low-density buildings from that specialization will be moved to Seaside.
Cargo Ferries - Cargo Ferries, or Barges, are ships designed to carry cargo over water from one point to another. This is different from Cargo Ships, which deliver cargo by water from outside the city, as Cargo Ferries would transport cargo within the city limits. This would allow players to build self-sufficient towns on islands away from the mainland without the use of bridges, and if they are using bridges, it could considerably free up traffic from commercial and industrial trucks on those roads. Cargo Ferries would require the construction of a Cargo Ferry depot, but they could use the same routes as Passenger Ferries.
Garbage Barges - A new pier building unlocked around the same time as the Incinerator that will periodically have trash delivered to them, before spawning large Garbage Barges that carry it outside city limits using the same pathways used by Cargo Ships and Cruise Ships.
Coast Guard - Occasionally, pedestrian boats, passenger ferries, and cruise ships at sea will experience emergencies, such as springing leaks or hitting underwater reefs. When this happens, the boat will stop in its tracks, and an icon indicating distress will appear over it. Coast Guard Stations are a coastal building that spawn Coast Guard speedboats (and possibly helicopters) to aid these ships. When a boat (or helicopter) reaches a distressed ship, the issue will be corrected, and the ship will continue on its way. If the Coast Guard does not reach the vessel in time, however, it and its passengers will despawn and seaside attractions will experience major reductions in attractiveness for a long duration.
Lighthouses - Another Coast Guard building, reduces the likelihood of nautical emergencies in its large radius.
Beach Housing - Concurrently with the expansion pack, a DLC pack adding Beach-themed houses as a district theme will be released, much like European Suburbia or University City. These houses are designed to compliment the buildings added by Island Cities.
GOVERNANCE
The Governance expansion pack is designed to expand the reach of the City government, add new policy options, make the player feel more like the mayor of a large city as well as add some assorted other features that are highly requested. This would be a larger DLC, and possibly as game-changing as Industries.
Contracts - This feature could probably use a better name but I’m going with this one for now. As Mayor of the city, once you build a City Hall building (unlocked early on) you will occasionally be presented with “missions” representing requests by concerned citizens or the higher government. These contracts can either be accepted or denied with no consequences. If accepted, an objective is provided, and a reward is given if the objective is completed. These can range from simple (enabling a policy or placing a service building) to much more complicated (providing public transport between two parts of the city, creating a certain kind of district, zoning a certain number of industrial squares, etc.) but the reward scales to the difficulty of the objective. To preserve the sandbox feel of the game, these can be completely ignored with no consequences or possibly even outright disabled with mods.
Government Buildings - In addition to the City Hall, a new series of Government Buildings are available to be plopped in the city. Bureau of Commerce, Department of Education, Department of Health, etc. While expensive, each building provides a slight global boost to its corresponding department, as well as unlocking powerful new policies and possibly even new building options.
Homeowners Association - A new Parklife-esque district zoning type focusing on Residential buildings. This feature makes a plethora of new low-residential style houses available to for the player to plop, varying in size from about the same as the growable residential houses at lower levels, to large mansions at the higher levels. At the highest level, you unlock the option to turn the houses in the Association into a gated community, requiring you to place a gate at the entrance and prohibiting non-residents (besides services) from entering. Families in Homeowners Associations prefer Charter Schools (see below) and require a certain amount of Charter School availability in addition to other factors for the zone to level up. Notably, once a Homeowners Association has been placed, the houses it unlocks can freely be placed outside its bounds and function as homes. However, buildings that aren't from the Homeowners Association menu cannot be placed or grown within its bounds. (Thank you u/sammunroe210)
Malls - Another new Parklife-esque zoning type, this one focusing on Commercial. Malls can be built as either sprawling outdoor malls, massive indoor complexes, or a combination of both. Notably, if building an indoor mall, the mall comes in “pieces” that can be assembled modularly, with each one (except the entrance) not requiring a network to connect to as long as they’re connected to another piece of the mall. This gives the player some degree of control as to the shape of the mall. Outdoor mall pieces include plazas, shops, cafes, boutiques, and other various commercial outlets that can be connected to either pedestrian path or road. Malls can be massively profitable but require lots of cargo deliveries, so good road access is a must, and can decrease the attractiveness of nearby commercial zoning.
Military Bases - The final Parklife-esque district, the Military Base is unlocked when you receive a contract asking you to build a base of a certain size within the city limits. To construct one, a gate must be placed, and then you can place a variety of buildings within such as barracks, obstacle courses, shooting ranges, officers’ quarters, tank yards, naval docks, airstrips, and missile silos, as well as props such as sandbags and guard posts and the like. Military hardware and uniforms are given a generic look as in Sim City to avoid representing any real-world country’s military. Military Bases create lots of jobs and significant income, but also generate lots of crime, noise pollution, and are a definite NIMBY.
Charter Schools - (Borrowed from Erls, please check out his suggestion post linked above) “Charter Schools include a new Elementary School and High School. Each School costs the same as the standard schools do, however they charge money for admission and have a reach 4x as long as conventional schools. They raise money, and are always preferred by households in Homeowners Associations, however each student in a Charter School decreases the effectiveness of a standard school on a graduated scale. Each student (in raw numbers) that attends a Charter School adds .01 % to the ineffectiveness of the standard schools. Thus, for every 100 kids in a Charter Elementary school 1% of students at a standard school are not educated. However, a multiplier of 0.1 is added based on the percentage of kids in a Charter school - Thus, if those 100 Charter kids were exactly 2% of the total elementary school body you would multiply the raw number (100) by 2% and add it back, giving you 120 - or a failing rate 20% higher.”
(Free Update) Parking - Parking is the major feature to come in the free update, adding several new buildings- parking lots of various sizes, and three tiers of parking garages. So as to avoid overwhelming people, parking is not suddenly a major demand of cities, and cities will not crumble if you don't add parking lots. However, parking lots boost the happiness of Cims around themselves, and Cims will prefer to park on a parking lot rather than on a road. Parking Garages function about as you would expect, providing more parking than standard parking lots. However, parking lots have some new zoning functionality.
https://i.imgur.com/VEQmay2.png
(On the left is the zoning grid of an empty road, on the right is the zoning grid of a road with a single 4x4 parking lot attached. Excuse my crummy MS paint skills) ​ Parking lots snap to the grid of roads, but they have their own zoning grids attached to them in all four cardinal directions, allowing you to place a parking lot on the road and then grow a building behind it, making creating strip malls and the like a much easier task. Furthermore, additional parking lots can be attached to the extended zoning grid of the first parking lot, allowing you to create vast, massive parking lots in any shape you like. Be aware though that at least one lot needs to be attached to a road, or else they won't function.
CITIES OF SPLENDOR
The third and final expansion pack idea, focused on casinos, tourism, and wealth. Many might think “But After Dark already focused on those things!”, which is true, but I feel that After Dark was created when CO had a different mindset. They likely did not know how successful Cities: Skylines would be, or how much DLC would be greenlit, so they tried to put as many highly-requested features as possible in After Dark. The day/night cycle, casinos, bike lanes, bus lanes, taxis, and more were all added, but none of them got quite as much attention as later additions did. I feel that it would be reasonable for another expansion pack to take a crack at these things, to bring them up to a higher level of polish.
VIPs - A new, special, one-of-a-kind tourist that visits your city when its popularity is high, or sometimes when a special event is happening (see below). VIPs are celebrities that tend to spend more money than regular tourists and if they have a positive experience in your city, you’ll get a boost to your tourism attractiveness, so always ensure they have lots to do. Limousine depots can be placed to spawn Limousines, taxis that can carry multiple passengers and are the preferred means of transport for a VIP. (Possibly) also “VIP” roads, roads only accessible to VIPs and service vehicles to ensure they have good access to important buildings, but that might be too powerful.
Events - Certain buildings are capable of hosting events that will draw a lot of people, both living in and outside of the city, to come visit them in the span of a day or so. Make sure these buildings have good road access to account for the increased traffic, and that VIPs can get there on time. A new building, the Convention Center, is the first building unlocked that is capable of hosting events, and the Match Day and Campus sports matches are retroactively considered events.
Casino Strips - Another Parklife-style district that adds a multitude of Casino buildings as well as Casino/Hotel hybrids, plazas, fountains, swimming pools, arcades, and lots of neon light props. Casino buildings should come in a wide variety of styles, ranging from Monaco to Vegas. These districts can net quite a bit of income, but cause a significant crime increase. They are especially attractive to tourists and VIPs and are capable of hosting events.
Golf Courses - A new park-type zoning centered around the titular sport. Ploppable buildings include several variations of holes, club house or country club buildings, driving ranges, golf cart rentals (with functional golf carts that can use pedestrian paths), as well as associated props. Golf carts are VERY expensive to keep and maintain but are extremely attractive, drastically boosting the land value around themselves. Golf Courses can host events such as golf tournaments.
Movie Studios - A Parklife-style zoning district (I swear this is the last one) or alternatively a very large ploppable building. I would prefer to see it as he former, allowing you to dedicate a zone to various studios, stages, outdoor filming locations, painted backdrops, a walk of fame, and props such as cameras and lights. Movie Studios are a good way to make money and tend to attract VIPs such as actors or directors, and host events such as film premieres.
Race Tracks - A Match Day-style stadium… except the ploppable building has network nodes attached to it, allowing you to place raceways that define the shape of the Race Track. Like Match Day stadiums and the event buildings introduced in this expansion, races will be held at the Race Track, and like Campus the city can even sponsor its own racer. Furthermore, raceways function as two-lane roads when they aren’t being raced on, allowing you to run them through your city- they’ll be closed of to the public when a race begins.
Desert Map Type - A new type of environment to build cities in. Desert maps, obviously, are almost entirely covered in sand, although a few grass patches may be present. Functionally they’re about the same as any other map, but new props are available for it such as desert rocks, palm tree variants, and cactuses of several types.
Casino City - A new building style sold in a DLC alongside the “Cities of Splendor” expansion that affects high-density residential, restyling them as colorful, grandiose buildings that would not look out of place in Monaco.
I'd like to foster as much discussion as possible, so please leave your thoughts below, and I'll edit any suggestions into the post.
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Weekend Reader: Two Haralabos Voulgaris Gambling Stories From The Past. (Very long).

[Note to this sub: Here are two gambling stories involving Haralabos Voulgaris. Two things you should know. 1) I originally wrote this for a completely different, anonymous audience and not for all the wonderful "Shoe Fitness Architects", "Pizza Delivery Engineers", Overnight Security Enforcers, and DMV Workers that I've gotten the pleasure of meeting on here during my time on /billsimmons. Instead, it will seem like I'm talking to a room full of strangers, and for the first time. So if you read something that you've already seen me say on this sub, you know the reason. I also sound “different” in this.
2) It's long. You've been warned, I don't want to hear shit about it being so damn long. Think of this as a throwback to the Page 2 days, when you knew a guy was going to take a huge, extended shit because he just printed out Simmons' latest article and ran into the bathroom. You know, the “glory days”.
If you read this on Friday, you can save this for your afternoon work shit. Read it on your phone though, because it's got a short YouTube clip in it that helps tell the story.
If you read it over the weekend, I suggest smoking a bowl beforehand, especially to our Canadian friends up North. Doesn't have to be Top Shelf, just something to buzz you going in.
That's it. Enjoy.
The recent news of the Dallas Mavericks hiring Haralabos Voulgaris as Director of Quantitative Research and Development recently blew my mind. I knew it was Bob's goal to be an NBA GM, and this job isn't quite on the GM level, but I still can't believe he's made it onto a real NBA organization. I still think of him mostly from his early 2000's poker and sports betting days, and I never imagined he'd be able to hold down a real job someday. I didn't think anyone from the gambling world ever could.
I was heavily into sports gambling and poker at the same time as Bob was ascending as a sports gambling force, from the late 80's until well into the 2000's. I didn't know Haralabos well, yet I heard about or saw him all the time. This pretty much describes all relationships in gambling to be honest. But I did make sure to hear all the stories about Haralabos back then, because they always made the gossip rounds and were usually funny.
I'm here to share two of Haralabos' famous gambling stories, to give you a little insight into the man. If you are an Old School gambler, you've already heard them. But they are now 15 years old, and I couldn't find a good telling already on the Internet, so new people might get a kick out of these. Sources are at the bottom of this post.
People need to understand that, back then (early 2000s), Bob was best known for two things: betting the NBA, and being a smart ass trash talker at the poker tables. Bob was a world class needler that people highly resented because he had “Fuck You” kinds of money and he sure lorded that fact over everybody. He found everyone in the gambling world incredibly stupid compared to himself, and wasn't afraid to let people know it. I guess that's not much different than his Twitter in 2018, except he's learned to be more polite about it.
It was amusing being in a poker room with Bob in it, unless you were the focus of his remarks. He did not have any boundaries and was merciless, and really went after people “Micheal Jordan style” with the ferocity of his put-downs. Asked to describe him, I'd say 98% of players back then would call him an “arrogant dickhead” (including me at that time), while 2% would say “really sharp guy who doesn't tolerate fools” (including me now). We would all agree that he could be hilarious.
With that set-up, here are two Haralabos Voulgaris gambling stories that let's you know what he was like back in the early 2000's.
Story #1
My favorite Haralabob story, which long time 2+2ers have already heard about and whose legend has grown over the years, is the infamous Freddy Deeb story. If you know it, you are already nodding your head. But hopefully it's new to you. It's a classic.
Freddy Deeb was a rich business man from Lebanon, but a lot of people thought he was Egyptian (close enough for poker players). “Fast Freddy” was a decent if unspectacular poker player who pre-dated the poker boom. So Freddy was a legit and well known regular even before TV got involved with the game, and parlayed that “real, genuine poker player” label into appearances on TV when the poker boom happened. He had strong credibility.
Freddy is probably most famously remembered for being accused of “Going South” by Johnny Chan on an episode of High Stakes Poker. Freddy handled that accusation in typical Freddy fashion – making a big deal about this small joke insulting his integrity, aggressively confronting everyone about it and challenging them to heads-up poker matches to prove his manhood. The dude could be a hothead. (“Going South”, which was more commonly called “rat-holing”, is when a player sneaks high denomination chips off the table undetected after winning a big pot, so he has no possibility of losing them back in a later big hand. It's a unethical way to play “hit and run” if you win big quickly, without the “running” part being as obvious as picking up and leaving immediately.)
The two things you needed to know about Freddy: 1) He was short. I mean really short, like 5'1” or less. Not to play Freud too much, but you can probably guess that the reason he spent all his time in poker rooms was because of this physical limitation. Poker attracted the social rejects like no other activity in the 1990's, and welcomed the physically and mentally defective in droves. It was a haven almost exclusively for nerds and losers, before TV made it cool for everyone to play No Limit Texas Hold'em, The Cadillac of Gambling Games (so hip!).
2) Stemming from #1, Freddy could have a short temper. If you are jumping straight into a “Napoleon Complex” accusation for Freddy, well, in this case you're the heavy favorite. Freddy was a quiet, nice guy for 90% of the time he played. But Freddy was quick to act like a gangster you didn't want to fuck with if you ever gave him the chance, with that persistent shoulder chip that will never go away. Everyone let him play gangster without comment as long as he still had a bankroll to gamble with.
Here is a YouTube video that illustrates both points perfectly. Watch the whole thing to the end for maximum comedy – it's fucking hilarious:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rqwQiIy1b48
Here's Freddy acting like a super tough guy, and – in the moment - you can believe it too. Until the camera pulls back and shows the other players at the table, and then you get a height perspective of the whole scene. It's unreal funny at that point. Gus Hansen sitting next to him looks like Yao Ming by comparison.
So when this first HBob story happens, poker is just about to really take off. My guess is that it was around 2003-4, so the hype around poker was growing fast but still not close to the peak yet. The first Season of the World Poker Tour (WPT) had already aired, and it was a cultural phenomenon. Poker players were speculating already that WPT tournament champions were going to be as famous as top professional athletes, and with the same kind of ultra-lucrative sponsorship opportunities and endorsement deals. A very common topic at the table was how much getting to the final table at a televised WPT event was worth in fame, above and beyond any of the listed prize money. Perhaps a few million? It was a crazy time, and being on TV was all anyone cared about back then. Seems a bit silly now.
Freddy had been on TV a few times with some respectable runs in some bigger tournaments. The WPT and ESPN featured him in a few “flavor of the game” clips during their early poker broadcasts, and that seemed like a pretty big deal, especially to Freddy. TV Poker was grooming narratives and trying to create presentable, relatable stars in the poker world and weren't above adding in some artificial flavor to an otherwise unremarkable cast of characters.
Being a legit long time poker player was enough for Freddy to get some screen time – the TV producers could take it from there. I think the narrative was along the lines of how anyone – all ages, ethnicity, shapes and sizes could find a home in the poker world, and Freddy exemplified all that. It all went directly to Freddy's head, and he was not alone during this time.
Anyway, the story goes like this. Haralabos is playing in a very juicy high stakes poker game in a California casino, most likely the Commerce. The game was already full with 9 players, which is the max in most California rooms.
Haralabos himself was very new to poker at this time. He dabbled previously, but only started playing for big stakes in the past year or two because of the huge influx of new poker players, who watched the WPT on television and flooded into casinos, chasing riches. Thus there was easy money to be made. Before then, of course, he was focused on his NBA gambling. He was very near the height of his powers as an NBA sports bettor, and known pretty damn well in the sports betting world, if not the general public yet. Far more people in poker knew about Bob than he knew about them, though. He was just starting to get serious about playing poker. Bob knew about some of the bigger poker names he gambled with betting sports together in the past, but knew almost none of the newly (and artificially) created TV “poker stars” that ESPN / WPT had chosen to promote.
So Freddy walks into the Commerce one day and sees the high stakes poker table, and eyes the line up. Freddy knows this “Main Game” is incredibly juicy, and wants in – immediately. He calls the floorman over and insists they create an extra space at the table for him and for the game to be played 10-handed. 10-handed was actually the common number of players in Las Vegas poker tables at the time, and Freddy was usually based there. Freddy is sort of 'big timing' the floorman, reminding him how much he's played there over the years, how much rake he's given that casino, and how all these new poker players want to play with someone like himself, a big-shot, old school, now famous poker player.
There is nothing that poker players like more than poker room drama (except maybe comped food), so this commotion has drawn the attention of every table within earshot. Everyone near by was focusing on the Main Game with Haralabos in it. Drawn from many accounts, here is a recreation of what happened:
Freddy (accented, slightly broken English)(to Floorman): Johnny, there's no board. Just put me in big blind right now and we can play with ten.
Floorman Johnny: Table's not big enough for ten, Freddy. This isn't Vegas. Our players will object. Everyone wants their space.
Freddy: Just ask then. If there are objections then Freddy will wait. But no one will object! C'mon Johnny, how much action I give to you? Freddy is “action player”. Everyone wants to play with Freddy. They see me, they know “That's Freddy” and they want to play.
[Yes, Freddy was talking about himself in the Third Person. What can I say?]
Floorman Johnny (reluctantly, to Main Game): Guys, Freddy wants to sit and play 10-handed. There is no board an he doesn't want to wait around for nothing. Any objections?
Haralabos (immediately): I object. Who the fuck is this guy? [To Freddy] Buddy, you're not special. What makes you think you control this game? If more people come, then you can start a “Must-Move” game and play in that. Otherwise, wait your fucking turn like everyone else. Ok, buddy? [To Floorman, incredulous] What the fuck?
Freddy (heated at Haralabos): Listen, buddy. Everyone here know Freddy. Floorman. Dealer. Players. All know Freddy, love Freddy. Who the fuck are you? In Vegas, Freddy wants a game, the manager come running to help Freddy! They bring in best table to start new game for Freddy! They get best dealer on break to come deal! They bring in new chips, new cards for Freddy! They bring special chair for Freddy to sit in!
Haralabos: Oh yeah, Freddy? Is it a high chair?
A thunderclap of uproarious laughter rang out from all who were listening in, perhaps fifty people or more, all rubberneckers from other tables drawn in by the drama. There was no denying the spontaneity, no denying the reason, and certainly no denying the focus of who the laughter was directed at. Fast Freddy, all five feet zero inches of him, with the hair-trigger anger and never lacking words, was truly stunned and humiliated into silence. His eyes became squinted and his face was stuck in a wince of pain, his whole head turning as red as a stubborn, two-week old pimple that just wouldn't pop. He rocked back and forth as if recovering from a physical punch, not knowing what to do as a second, smaller wave of laughter began because it was just that funny, and now the story was being instantly re-told.
The few that were present and could actually feel sympathy quickly stifled their laughter, feeling the guilt of knowing the guy just got hit in his most sensitive area in front of a very large audience, and was truly wounded. They were hoping Freddy would finally say something, anything, to show that he wasn't completely crushed inside, that he wasn't as hurt as he seemed. Instead, Freddy walked away silently, his decades of “bluster armor” built protecting his sensitivity about his height laid on the ground, smashed.
Souls are crushed all the time in poker rooms. You think you've seen it all, and you just grow immune. But this one stood out, as almost a warning. You just don't want to get into a verbal war with Haralabob.
There is an addendum to this story.
A year or so later, and strictly by chance, Freddy and Haralabos found themselves at the same table during a big tournament. Neither man had forgotten their previous encounter (how could they?). By this time, poker was being covered in real-time by a fleet of new poker reporters and journalists, and, by all accounts, Haralabos was riding Freddy hard that day, with verbal put-downs and jokes at Freddy's expense non-stop. Freddy tried to play it cool, knowing he was no verbal match for HBob.
Until this happened. There was a Random Guy sitting directly on Freddy's left hand side who was new, didn't know anyone at the table (or their past history with each other) and who politely told Freddy this (recreation):
Random Guy (to Freddy): Hey man. You need to protect your cards better. I can see your hole cards flash sometimes when you look. I saw you had paint last hand. You need to learn to peek without flashing.
Freddy: Buddy, do you know who I am? I'm playing this game since before you were born! I win more money this year than you will have in your whole life! They ask me to write new poker book, that is kind of player I am! Buddy, I'm writing now, next time I see you I bring you a signed copy of my poker book!
Haralabos: Next time you should bring a phone book instead so you can sit on it and see your cards better.
Well, Freddy was playing it cool with HBob until then, but that last comment instantly set him off. Again, by the written accounts of the poker reporters live blogging the event, Freddy shot straight up out of his chair (though you probably couldn't tell...) and challenged HBob to a fist fight, screaming expletives at him and demanding a duel. Haralabob just sat in his chair laughing, saying he didn't want to go outside and fight Freddy because he didn't want to get arrested for child abuse.
Famous poker player Daniel Negreanu witnessed this incident live, and blogged about it at the time. I remember that he thought that Freddy would be a decent favorite in a fight between Freddy and Haralabos. But I have my doubts about that. Negreanu disliked Haralobob personally, like many poker players who ever faced him at that time, because HBob could be so vicious. So he was biased in his fight assessment, IMHO.
HBob was not a figher at all - more of a jester than a knight – but I thought he could always just stiff-arm Freddy by the forehead and then Freddy would be left with that cartoon 'swinging of the arms trying to reach him' thing while HBob could just jab him with his other arm. I would have made Haralabos the -200 favorite.
Story #2
This happened in the early 2000's, during Season 3 of the World Poker Tour, just a year or so after Story #1.
Haralabos had played in one of the WPT's big televised tournaments and made the Final Table. Not only that, but he ultimately came in Second Place, meaning he was going to get a LOT of TV time, which, again, most players thought was worth more than the actual prize money. Poker by now was white hot in America and was bringing so many people instant overnight fame. Players were resorting to obnoxious table antics and hyper displays of “personality” just to get a few seconds of screen time. Everyone was trying to create a “brand”.
Not to belabor the point, but before television made poker cool and respectable, it was filled with 95% scumbags and degenerates with almost no white-collar, working professionals. But TV poker didn't want to portray that sordid image. In the very early days, the WPT actually had a “dress code” for appearing on the televised Final Table, where a sports jacket and collared shirts were required and would be provided for you if you didn't own them yourself (in other words, for everyone).
Even the long time “Old School” gamblers were cleaned up and presented as daring adventurers instead of leather-assed angle-shooters they (we) really were. Known broke degenerates like T.J. Cloutier was turned into worshiped, heroic figures instantly, romanticized by television producers as sharp equity traders who practiced at the table instead of on Wall Street. The reality was that guys like Cloutier were hanging around poker rooms mostly to shamelessly beg recent winners for a buy-in, or even just a meal.
Under this ethos of “cleaning up poker players' images”, players were allowed to manufacture any kind of image they wanted if they were going to be on the WPT TV show. Producers for the WPT would ask each finalist for a biography, but did absolutely no fact or background checking at all intentionally, mostly out of fear of what they might find if they actually did do so. So with all that in mind, here is the official bio for Haralabos that appeared on the WPT website before his televised event, almost certainly written by HBob himself:
"Haralabos Voulgaris is a 29-year-old professional sports bettor from Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. This poker tyro brings a lot more to his first WPT final table than meets the eye. He is a playwright, holds a degree in philosophy, and his goals reach far beyond the green felt. His plans for the next 5 years include learning to play the piano, to have one of his plays performed on Broadway, and to win a WPT title."
I'm not sure how much of this was an inside joke, how much was just the pressure to appear white-collar in order to attract advertisers (remember, poker players were all thinking about future endorsement deals at this time), and how much of this was HBob's ego run amuck.
BUT COME ON! “Playwright”? Has Haralabos ever gone to a play yet, even in 2018? But that wasn't enough; he wanted to have one of his many, many written plays performed on Broadway very soon, because that's how dedicated he was to this art form! Just remember, this is the guy who widely known throughout the poker world for using his mastery of language to mercilessly torture midgets and other unfortunates at the poker table. Not exactly Tennessee Williams. Add in the piano lessons and the PhD in philosophy (philosophy!), and the fact that the WPT didn't bat an eye in putting this up as his bio, and the unintentional comedy is off the charts.
Haralabos claimed to friends at the time that it was mostly a joke, but as we will now see, he seemed to really care about this false image.
As you probably well know, there is a gap between when the WPT Final Table was played, and when the show based off of it is actually aired. By the time Haralabos' episode was about to air, he was staying as a guest in the house of a former poker pro named Paul Phillips, who only the most dedicated and old players will remember. (Paul Phillips won 2 WPT titles in the very early seasons, took the prize money, and pretty much disappeared from poker, going on to live a “normal” life. One of the few gambling success stories, IMHO).
Well, Paul was a practical joker himself, and he had found a way to hack his DVR and change the description of recorded programs, including Bob's WPT episode. Knowing that Haralabos was coming back soon to watch it, Paul changed the description on the DVR to fuck with him. The original show description was something like this:
“Six new players vie for the title of Champion of the LA Poker Classic Tournament. Players include movie star John Smith, astronaut Mark Hunt, playwright Haralabos Volgaris, undercover international spy Chris Jenkins, the crown prince of Wakanda Jerome Jones, and the inventor of the Internet Joe “Man Tits” Mande.“
Obviously the other names and titles were made up by me, but you get the picture. Anyway, Paul made one small adjustment, knowing Haralabos would see it:
“Six new players vie for the title of Champion of the LA Poker Classic Tournament. Players include movie star John Smith, astronaut Mark Hunt, uptight playwright Haralabos Volgaris, undercover international spy Chris Jenkins, the crown prince of Wakanda Jerome Jones, and the inventor of the Internet Joe “Man Tits” Mande.“
Paul then waited for Haralabos to return so they could watch the episode together, leaving up the modified description of “uptight playwright” on the TV and making sure HBob was in the room alone for a few minutes before starting the show, so he had no choice but to stare at the phony description.
Bob noticed it immediately. According to Paul, HBob started to get really worried, thinking that the show was going to portray him in a terrible light and edit him to look dumb and foolish, just because of that one word “uptight” in the description. Before even starting the show, HBob was already making excuses, telling Paul that he forgot they kept his microphone on at all times, and he said some critical things about the WPT's production crew, and now they were getting their revenge by calling him uptight. He kept bringing up ways he might have acted uptight during the Final Table and was pre-rationalizing them for Paul, who was enjoying it all.
This went on for the first 15 minutes or so of the show, with Haralabos worrying and moaning non-stop about being called “uptight” and wondering how they were going to edit him to look that way, until Paul finally let him off the hook. According to Paul, Haralabos didn't believe it was a practical joke and kept worrying and griping longer, until he saw for himself that it was just a standard WPT show with no unfair editing involved.
I'm not going to put too much on Haralabos for being so worried about his portrayal. Players really did believe that a good edit was the difference between a lucrative endorsement deal with Budweiser or Nike and getting nothing. The sky seemed to be the limit. BUT... the notion that Bob was just playing an inside joke and didn't really care about being known as a “playwright, piano player, and philosopher” didn't quite match up with his defensive and concerned attitude that day.
Sources:
Source for Story #1: This is a very famous poker story that was talked about amoung players live and on 2+2 (the dominant, high-traffic poker forum back then and perhaps now) a lot when it happened. You can find snippets and references on twoplustwo.com. I'm sure other long time and knowledgeable players will verify hearing a version of this story before.
An account of it was given by Haralabos himself on the podcast “Big Poker Sundays” which he used to co-host with Scott Huff, but has long since disappeared. It was a part of Poker Road Radio, which was run by Barry Greenstein's asshole son before closing. As this story is now close to 15 years old and poker media is on life support, many previous accounts from blogs and recording are now gone, and thus a lot of it had to be reconstructed from memory. Part of the reason I'm re-telling it is because it was gradually being lost in time, and that is a motive to re-tell it now, for a new generation.
Source for Story #2: I got the exact WPT description of Bob's bio from the 2+2 Archive (http://archives1.twoplustwo.com/showflat.php?Cat=0&Number=5504109&page=0&fpart=all&vc=1). The story of the altered DVR description and Paul Phillips came from the memory of Paul's old blog on LiveJournal (“extempore”), which has long been deleted, and from my own correspondence with Paul Phillips at the time (we were pretty good “online friends” before the invention of Social Media. Anyone remember r.g.p. on Usenet?). Again, unfortunately memory had to play a large role.
I by no means want to pretend Haralabos and I were close. I knew about him and tracked him more than most poker players due to my sports betting background, but Bob was just one of a hundred different and strange characters in the gambling world that you'd recognize daily, none of whom you'd want to spend a lot of time with. We had some mutual friends, that's about it.
Both stories were written under the Geneva Convention rules, which explicitly states that all gambling stories worldwide may contain up to 15% of exaggerations in order to make the story more entertaining or dramatic and still be called “truthful”. Like all good gambling stories should be told. But the core elements are as faithful a retelling as I could make it, including the WPT description, and the key dialogue by Bob that was quoted the most at that time. It's the dates and locations I'm least sure about.
submitted by mcribgaming to billsimmons [link] [comments]

What has changed in the MTT poker scene/strategy in the last 8 years ?

Long story short. I used to grind low to medium stake MTT’s on Stars and Full tilt rather successfully for a few years before Black Friday (biggest win was a $15,000 first on Stars) . After that I dabbled with a few local small buyin tournaments but eventually stopped. Just recently a family member has fallen upon a large large sum of money and has always wanted to stake me for big tournaments even before he came into this money. Now I may have the opportunity to get back into almost any tournament I could think of , a dream I always had. My question is what are the most prominent changes in the Tournament poker scene. Getting staked for tournaments with no risk while keeping 50% of the profits just seems like a no brainer and I need to get my head back into poker like when I used to live and breathe it on a daily basis from 2008-2011. Any other tips or suggestions for where to start getting in some experience before hopefully taking on as many events as possible next year at the WSOP 2020. Currently located in Southern California (Bicycle Casino, Commerce Casino, Hawaiian Gardens , Hustler , Hollywood Park, etc )
submitted by dvdestbn to poker [link] [comments]

Gaming Racing and Wagering Australia

Gaming Racing and Wagering Australia

Gaming Racing and Wagering Australia (GRWA) celebrates its 10th edition at the spectacular at L' Aqua, Cockle Bay Wharf, Sydney.
https://preview.redd.it/ua2eemjef6f31.jpg?width=1869&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=5596d95c83ee398f5ddb0d9e45539d6a2c212818
GRWA is the region's premier gaming conference running from 12th to 14th August 2019, bringing together Australia's leading sports betting, gaming, wagering, lottery and racing executives to learn about the latest developments in the industry, incoming regulations and strategies to stay ahead of the curve.
This C-Level event is sure to be jam-packed as attendees jump at the chance to be in the same room with gaming regulators across Australia, including Queensland and South Australia, plus some of the country's most established and influential gaming professionals.
As well as grabbing the chance to network with fellow professionals the first day rounds off with a Poker Tournament at the World-Class Star Sydney Casino & hotel. The Star offers the very best of premium gaming experiences in Sydney with revamped private gaming areas and fine dining.
The event boasts an impressive line-up of speakers such as former US Army Captain Donald Carducci from J.P. Morgan Chase and Andrew Scott, CEO of Inside Asian Gaming.
Australian born Andrew has been a high stakes poker player, professional blackjack player and educator, and a poker tournament television commentator. Andrew scooped the prestigious 2014 Macau Person of the Year award, and his vast experience of the casino industry makes him the ideal person to chair this event.
https://preview.redd.it/umtw19sof6f31.jpg?width=714&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=b6984049e7e7faf29590d544c0be65cf2f9c9661
Scott Barron of the Dragon Media team caught up with Andrew ahead of the event - Andrew said: "I'm very happy to be chairing at the GRWA event and to be in Australia in mid-August when many gaming and IR industry leaders traditionally gather in Sydney. At IAG, we consider both Australia and New Zealand to be very much part of Asia and our industry coverage across the continent. Australia has a rich casino industry dating back to the 1970s and is a favourite destination for VIP players from China and Southeast Asia. Australia also has a very robust pub and club scene and over the years has played a leading role in the development of slot machines, especially the development of video reels and features."
After moving to Macau in 2009, Andrew founded O Media, which quickly became one of Macau's largest media companies. He is Vice Chairman of the Australian Chamber of Commerce in Macau, a Fellow of the Hong Kong Institute of Directors, a permanent member of the Macau Gaming Management Association and President of the Macau Taxi Passengers Association. He is also a member of the International Federation of Journalists, the Portuguese and English Press Association of Macau and the Poker Tournament Directors Association.
Paul Moynan, the co-founder of Dragon, said, 'On top of all these amazing achievements Andrew will also be completing his Master's Degree in International Integrated Resort Management this year. The casino industry is clearly in Andrews blood, and I and all of the team at Dragon wish Andrew good fortune for the event which is sure to be spectacular.'
submitted by ellesiahaan to DragonDRG [link] [comments]

July 2019 Olean Area Things to Do

What are you most looking forward to in the month of July? First comment has more events.
Please include links to the event info if possible.
submitted by pschultz to olean [link] [comments]

March 2019 - Olean Area Things to Do

What are you most looking forward to for the month of March? I found so many things I have to put the last two days in a comment to make it fit!
Please include links to the event info if possible.
submitted by pschultz to olean [link] [comments]

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Commerce casino argument

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