On July 1, 1962, Sam and Bill Boyd opened the downtown Henderson casino, marking the first joint venture of the legendary father-son team, and the beginning of what would become Boyd Gaming, one of the most respected companies in the gaming industry.
On Sunday, July 1 at 3 p.m., Bill Boyd will attend the official 50th anniversary celebration at the Eldorado – open to the public – featuring a champagne toast, free cake and special anniversary giveaways. In celebration of the anniversary, the downtown Henderson landmark put in circulation commemorative, limited edition $5 gaming chips. In a throwback to the prices of 1962, the snack bars at both the Eldorado and Jokers Wild will offer a variety of 50-cent specials throughout the year, including shrimp cocktails, hot dogs, hot wings, soft drinks, draft beer and coffee.
For a limited time the Henderson and Rancho casino resorts are offering what may arguably be the best current value buffets in all of Las Vegas.
The 100-item (give or take) festival buffets are family-friendly priced at $3.99 for breakfast (available at Fiesta Henderson only) lunch for $4.99, and dinner for $5.99.
There are no real restrictions other than the standard “cannot be combined with any other offer or coupon.” Just mention the special offer to the buffet cashier and show a valid Boarding Pass card (free to join.) A Boarding Pass member can include three additional guests on the offer. The “limited time” is unspecified.
The Mad Onion restaurant now features an all new “Everything Under $9.99” menu, including meals starting as low as $4.99 and graveyard specials at $2.99.
Throughout June, Club Cortez players winning a jackpot of $200 or more on a slot machine, $200 or more on a video poker five-cent or lower denomination machine, $300 or more on a video poker 10-cent or high denomination machine, or $200 or more on live keno will receive a free El Cortez logo Island Shirt.
Be sure to notify an attendant of your jackpot before playing it off to get your gift ticket. All jackpot winners also receive an entry into the weekly Saturday night 40” LCD HDTV giveaway and $2,000 cash prize drawing. See Club Cortez for additional information and to redeem your tickets for shirts.
There is a $5,000 Hot Seat Giveaway this Thursday with $1,000 in cash prizes given away every hour from 3 to 8 p.m. Slot and video poker players with their B Connected card inserted in a machine and actively playing are eligible to win.
Rewards Club members playing slots or video poker machines between 6 and 10 p.m., this Friday will be entered into a drawing for the chance to win $100. During these hours, 100 winners will be randomly selected to win $100 in free slot play. Lucky winning machines will be randomly chosen by selecting a reel slot, video slot or video poker machine being actively played with a Rewards Club card properly inserted.
“Actively playing” means you can’t simply insert your card in a machine and leave it there hoping to win without playing. You can only be selected if the machine is being played with money being cycled through at regular intervals. Seems simple enough but someone always asks.
Through July 31, players have a chance to win up to $500 every day. Earn 500 points in one day on selected slots, video poker or table games to play in daily Slot Challenge. Play up to five times a day for a chance to win up to $100 each time. Daily earning period begins at 8 p.m., and lasts through 7:59 p.m., the following evening. Visit the club booth to register.
Until next week…good gaming and good luck!
In celebration of Independence Day, the mid-week July 4 holiday will be celebrated all over town with fireworks and parties galore and kicks us off to a great month of casino promotions.
As the sun sets, Station Casinos will again host the largest Fourth of July fireworks show in Southern Nevada this Wednesday shortly after 9 p.m. The fireworks show will be a nine-minute presentation produced by Grucci of New York. The citywide fireworks shows will go off at Aliante Station, Green Valley Ranch Resort, Fiesta Rancho, Texas Station and Red Rock Casino Resort. Arrive early for parking.
At 9:30 p.m., Wednesday the casino will display a brilliant fireworks show that will paint the night sky with vivid colors. The prime viewing location will be situated behind Buffalo Bill’s Resort & Casino within the Star of the Desert Arena parking lot.
The Colorado Belle Casino Resort opened its doors Fourth of July weekend in 1987. The property will celebrate the 25th anniversary with a spectacular fireworks display at 9:30 p.m. Complimentary cake and champagne will be served from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. inside the casino. The best view of the fireworks will be from the property’s river walk. The public is invited to join in for the free refreshments and fireworks.
There is an impressive free fireworks display from the rooftop of the Roman Tower on Saturday, July 7. The celebratory show will kick off at 9:15 p.m. (weather permitting), granting hotel guests and passersby the best views on the Las Vegas Strip from the front fountains.
This Friday inside Miracle Mile Shops the PBR Rock Bar will hold its official grand opening party for the Las Vegas Strip’s new party spot. Bar revelers can party on the bar’s elevated dance platforms while they rock out to the DJ spinning top 40, rock and pop selections. Partygoers can enjoy a $25 open bar with domestic drafts and Ketel One cocktails from 9 p.m. until close.
The downtown casino is hosting pool parties this summer. Starting Saturday, July 21, there will be a Rockabilly Pool Party from 6 p.m. to midnight. It’s a retro-inspired night of poolside fun with drink specials at the bar, dancing to the DJs and rockin’ to the live rockabilly bands. The Rockabilly Pool parties are going down July 21, Aug. 18 and Sept. 15. Admission is free.
July begins with a “$300,000 Summer Spectacular.” On Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday, players can earn 200 same-day base points between 3 a.m. and 11 p.m. Players can swipe and spin the wheel on the kiosk to win a random prize, including possible bonus points, 2x bonus point multipliers, $20-$50 in free slot play, buffets or a SP logo t-shirt. No points are deducted from the players account. On Mondays and Wednesdays, from 1 to 9 p.m., $1,000 cash will be awarded to a random winner every 30 minutes.
Have a safe and happy Fourth.
Until next week…good gaming and good luck!
Hard Rock and Silverton Casinos
Fiat seems to be the car of the month. You can win one at both the Hard Rock and Silverton Casinos, which will be giving them away to several lucky players this month.
The Hard Rock Fiat 500 Giveaway Drawing runs through July 28 and players receive one virtual drawing ticket for every 50 slot points or every 300 table points earned.
The drawing will be held Saturday, July 28 at 7 p.m., in front of the Backstage Pass Rewards Club where winners will have the chance to win two Fiat 500’s, free slot play and Chevron gas cards. You can earn double virtual drawing tickets every Monday throughout the month.
At Silverton, gamers can earn chances to win some great prizes every Saturday during July in the $90,000 Fiats & Fuel Giveaway. Drawing days are Saturdays at 7 p.m. Players earn one entry into the drawing for every 50 base points earned with a maximum of 100 entries per guest each day.
Ten names will be randomly drawn from the virtual drum using the Total Promo computer drawing system to determine the winner every Saturday at 7 p.m. The names of the winners are posted at the box office no later than 7:15 p.m., that same day. Prizes include:
• First name drawn wins a new Fiat or $10,000
• Second name drawn wins $2,500 cash or free slot play
• Third name drawn wins $1,250 free slot play
• Fourth name drawn wins $750 free slot play
• Fifth name drawn wins $500 free slot play
• Sixth through tenth names drawn win $100 gas card each
The sister Strip properties have a new member rewards promotion. As a special offer, new Grazie Members can earn points and choose rewards to make the most of their first trip. New members who earn 500 points on their first trip receive $10 free slot play.
Those who earn 1,000 points receive one gondola ride or $20 free slot play. At 2,000 points the reward is a $30 comp to Zine Noodles Dim Sum or Lagasse’s Stadium. At 3,000 points there is a $50 slot credit or two gondola ride tickets.
At 5,000 points the choice is $150 to Canyon Ranch SpaClub or $100 slot credit. Players can choose one prize at each level achieved. Since these venues are joined slot clubs, the promotion can be done once at either property when signing up as a new member; not both places.
The “Great Race 2012” is on at any of the 18 Total Rewards destination areas across the U.S. to earn “CheckPoints” and receive up to 75,000 Reward Credits to use for most anything you like, including shopping, dining, entertainment and more. Players have to earn at least 25 Tier Credits at each destination.
The more destinations you visit, the more you can earn. You can find a long list of all the rules and regulations at any Caesars Entertainment Total Rewards booth or go online at totalrewards.com and look for the “Great Race.”
Get a $50 gas card for $25 in comp points this month at Poker Palace in North Las Vegas. Visit the Gold Club booth for details.
For a bargain breakfast this month, check out three eggs your way with hash browns, toast, sausage or bacon for a mere $1.49 at Club Fortune in Henderson. Served daily this month from 6 a.m. to 11 a.m., dine in only.
Until next week…good eats, good gaming and good luck!
Final 3 Poker
To round out the first three “C’s of Success” – competence, confidence, and control – we discussed in an earlier issue here are the final three components that will lead you to success in any of life’s ventures.
Commitment. Lack of commitment keeps you in limbo. To paraphrase Teddy Roosevelt’s famous commitment comments, until you truly commit yourself to something (someone, an idea, a venture), you are hesitant about moving forward. There is always the chance to drop out and slide over to something else. If your poker or handicapping career has stalled, it may be because you have not committed yourself to attaining the level of excellence or the degree of dedication required to become a winning player.
If you never commit past fifth street, you’ll never discover what seventh street holds for you. Of course, without commitment you may never have to face the possibility of losing the prize you are seeking. Lack of commitment is one way some people hedge their losses. If you venture not, you lose not – but you also win naught. In that sense, lack of commitment is one form of fence-sitting, a posture often engaged in by life’s losers.
Concentration. I once had a math teacher who expected quick and accurate answers to his oral quizzes. If one of us fluffed, he’d retort, “You’re not concentrating! Think again.” Think again and again and again.
This fifth “C” of success includes singlemindedness of purpose, mindful attention to subtle nuances, and the ability to do it hand after hand, game after game, every time you play. In a recent tournament, I heard the thirdplace finisher explain why he made a poor call: “I lost my concentration.” He also lost a lot of money.
Courage. After reading Rollo May’s intriguing book, The Courage To Create, I congratulated myself for being courageous enough to submit my first manuscript for publication over 20 years ago. Poker players also need the courage to create plays at the table, where they are risking money based on incomplete knowledge with an uncertain outcome.
Some bettors see themselves as courageous innovators because they continually risk money on highly speculative ventures. If they’re right, they’re geniuses; if wrong, they’re lunatics. Most of us call them “maniacs.” Other bettors, those shy souls who play tight-timid, lack the courage of even a church mouse in a Tibetan monastery.
The courage to take the risk, to throw in the extra chips when you have the right odds, to create the trap play, to call a bluff: This kind of courage comes from the first five C’s of success – competence, confidence, commitment, concentration and control.
And it usually creates the seventh “C,” the one that all gamblers use as the ultimate measure of success – Cash!
Virtually every poker
“Life is but an endless series of experiments.”– Mahatma Gandhi (1869-1948)
Mahatma Gandhi is considered the father of the Indian independence movement. He created the concept of non-violent protesting against injustices. Gandhi’s virtue, simplistic lifestyle and minimal dress endeared him to the people of India.
A brilliant young man, educated as a lawyer in England, he spent much of his life trying to better those of India’s poorest classes. Many civil rights leaders, including Martin Luther King, Jr., used Gandhi’s concept of non-violent protest as a model for their own struggles. His sayings are often quoted…Perhaps his most famous is: “An eye for an eye only ends up making the whole world blind.”
Food for thought, but our purpose today is focusing on the headline quote and how it relates to the game of poker.
Defining experiment Virtually every poker
“An experiment is a methodical trial-and-error procedure carried out with the goal of verifying, falsifying, or establishing the validity of a hypothesis.” (Wikipedia)
Since poker is a microcosm, a miniature version of life, then experimentation as we often practice it also should apply to the game of poker. In a sense, virtually every poker hand dealt is an experiment of sorts.
You peek at the two hole cards. Based on their value, your betting position, the actions taken by opponents before you and your evaluation of them a decision is made to call, raise or fold. In making that choice, you have formed a hypothesis – a theory, premise or guess.
You cannot be certain it is the best decision in this case.Virtually every poker
In a lab experiment, the results are either positive (tending to proving the validity of your hypothesis) or negative (in which case, you must revise). You may conduct several replicates to confirm your findings.
There is one subtle difference in our poker experiment: Your hypothesis may be correct, but the results may not be what is hoped for. You lose the pot. What’s more, it is almost impossible to exactly replicate your poker experiment. There are just too many factors and variables, many of which are beyond your control.
In poker, our hypotheses must involve probability, chance or odds. In the long run if your hypothesis was correct, you will be a winner. So poker experiments must apply for the long term. Eventually (if you can wait long enough) you might know whether your hypothesis is correct.
Example: In a middle position, you are dealt K-Q offsuit in a limit hold’em game. One opponent before you calls to see the flop. Your hypothesis is that if deciding to raise, you will force out players with A-rag or a small pair so as to improve the chances of winning. In fact, an opponent behind you folds his pocket deuces and another throws in A-3 off suit.Virtually every poker
The flop puts a king on the board, matching your king in the hole. The turn is a deuce. Fortunately for you, the pocket deuces had folded. The river is an ace. Your pair of kings wins the pot. You conclude that your hypothesis was 100% correct. Your preflop raise made the difference between a winner and a loser.
Unfortunately, it doesn’t always work out that way. There will be times that the pocket deuces decide to call the raise. Your K-K is second best after a deuce falls on the turn. For that matter there will be times when you do not pair one of your big hole cards. An opponent who called to see the flop with 8 -7 suited has matched his 8 and beats your K-high.
Conclusion: Yes, poker is a form of experimentation, but who has the time and fortitude to wait for eons to verify each hypothesis? Not even Gandhi. My advice: Use your best judgment and pray to the poker gods to smile on you.
Watching sports on TV, I have learned that great competitors in individual sports such as golf and tennis have many traits in common with tournament poker stars. There’s endurance, poise under pressure, shifting gears when conditions change, a positive attitude, and making key shots that significantly affect the outcome of the contest.
But many of the world’s best competitors have never picked up a racket, swung a club, or been dealt a hand—the weekly warriors on television’s popular game shows. Like poker tournament players, these aficionados of gamesmanship must combine skill and luck to win in a short time in front of millions of people. Here are some strategies these do-it-now-or-never contestants use to surmount the obstacles of time, notoriety and stress.
Timing. The third contestant on Wheel of Fortune was not a happy camper: He had controlled the wheel only three times in 20 minutes, first spinning it to “Lose a Turn,” then guessing a wrong letter, and finally landing on “Bankrupt.”
As the three-way game neared its end, Pat Sajak gave the wheel one final spin to hasten the end of the final round. It landed on the big one, $5,000. Tension mounted as each contestant took a turn at choosing correct letters, which would be worth $5,000 apiece to the anagram player who solved the puzzle.
“N,” said No. 3. “There are four Ns!” Sajak chortled. “You have five seconds to solve the puzzle and win $20,000.”
Not only did the Johnny-come-lately solve it to pocket the $20 grand, he also went on to crack the grand-prize puzzle and win a Corvette.
“Well,” said Sajak, “You’ve gone from nothing to over $55,000 in five minutes. I’d call that good timing.”
Sounds like a tournament I wish I had once played.
Timing is the magic ingredient you need to take full advantage of the skill-luck mix in poker. Vintage Card Player columnist Tex Sheahan once called good timing circumstance, that moment near the end of the tournament when the big stacks are pushed into the center, when you hit your winning card on the river to capture all the marbles in the ring.
Skill and Luck. Drew Carey gives away two or three new cars every weekday on The Price is Right. The red Mustang convertible is what everybody wants to win—not the bedroom set, the grandfather clock, or the big screen TV.
To get a chance at the Mustang, you must first defeat three opponents in a bidding war of price-shopping skill for a smaller prize, similar to a poker satellite. The next hoop you must jump through usually requires guessing the correct price of three small items to win the premium prize you’re really after.
Here’s the kicker: You then must get lucky and spin closer to 100 on the Big Wheel than anyone else to win a chance at the Showcase Showdown, a heads-up bidding duel against your opponent to win all the goodies in Carey’s bag, usually another car, a fab vacation, or a manse of furniture.
This combination of skill and luck is the hook that lures me into watching the show during breakfast—the same dual-pronged hook of tournament poker. You can be the most skillful price-guesser in history, but if you don’t get lucky on the spin, you’re history. Ditto for tournament duelists who adroitly arrive at the final table only to find that Lady Luck is serving the cards ala carte to someone else.
Next time, we’ll discuss strategy, the final element in the winning formula.