(Note: I’ve been waiting for years to begin playing tournament poker in a legal venue close to home. Wednesday, my time for waiting is finally over. You can follow my progress here in this blog. I’ll try and keep my tournament results up to date. )
As strictly a tournament player, I was disheartened when my long awaited dream of legal casino poker was crushed when the newly-opened venue in Maryland, Maryland Live! limited their tournaments to buy-ins above and beyond what I was able to afford. With that in mind, I was thrilled to see the October poker schedule include some $65+$15 NLH tournaments a couple of times a week. The $50+$10 PLO tournament on Friday’s will be awesome too.
So, with that in mind, and having not a lot to do on a Saturday night, I thought it would be a good idea for my wife and I to take a trip up to ML from our home in DC to get our player’s cards. For those that don’t know, every participant that gambles on anything in a casino needs to have a players-card issued to them by the casino. I live right on the border of NW and NE in DC so I was able to shoot out New York ave, and up 295 and made the trip to the casino quickly. I don’t know the exact time it took us but it couldn’t have been more than 45 minutes and really seemed more like a half hour. Very very nice for a guy used to traveling for hours up to Atlantic City in NJ.
Anyhoo, it was very busy around 10pm but we managed to find a parking spot in the garage in fairly short order. We walked out of the garage and around the wrong side I guess because we had to pretty much dodge the incoming traffic to get to the casino entrance. More clearly-marked signs in the garage would be helpful. Both for pointing pedestrians to the casino, and cars towards the exits.
Once inside, it was pretty packed but we still managed to get our players cards in short order. We checked out the poker room and quickly spent our free slot-play for first-timers. My overall impression of the casino was good. Unlike NJ, It was nice being in a new casino with not even a hint of cigarette smoke in the air. Very cool. I used the mens room right outside of the poker room and didn’t like seeing the tray of cash displayed along with the towel-guy. I can wipe my own hands thanks. Bally’s used to have a guy do that and I never liked it. My wife said there was no towel person in her restroom and that it was kind of dirty and gross in there. Anyway…
Leaving the facility was not fun as the elevators to the parking garage had lines like 20 or 30 people long. We opted for the walk which included a hike up the 4 flights of steps to the car. The last couple of flights were not fun. I’ll wait in line next time. The weekday tournaments are scheduled for noon, so hopefully the lines to the elevators will be much shorter.
But I’m all ready to go now. The first $65 tournament is Wednesday. I’ll most likely be wearing my lucky long-sleeve Ron Paul shirt. I call it lucky because the time I wore it at Delaware Park Casino, I played two tournaments, won one and chopped with four players for a nice prize in the other.
Anyhoo, excited to finally get going here in Maryland. Should be awesome. See you at the tables.
By Ed LaRue
Ed’s blog can be found at Click4Silver.com