If you need a reason to check out Florida’s poker rooms, a new tour might be enough for you to reach for the keys and hop into your car.
Ante Up magazine, which covers Florida poker, has created a yearlong series of tournaments with a special incentive to the player who accumulates the most points: a spot on the magazine’s cover.
There are 30 poker rooms in the state, at horse tracks, dog tracks, jai-alai frontons, cruise ships and Indian casinos. About half of them have agreed to hold a tournament connected to the Ante Up tour in the first month. The tour began June 6 in Immokalee; the first South Florida event is Friday.
“The goal is to get people to travel around the state and see all the great poker rooms,” said Scott Long, co-publisher of Ante Up.
Long and co-publisher Chris Cosenza are former St. Petersburg Times editors who began a poker blog and podcast at the paper in June 2005. In July 2008, they left the paper to start the magazine.
The magazine is free in racks at 29 rooms, or sold by subscription for $25 at AnteUpMagazine.com.
Players accumulate points by finishing in the top 10 in a tournament. The person who earns the most points through May 31, 2010, will be on the magazine’s cover and receive a championship bracelet. Meanwhile, Long and Cosenza are lining up other tour prizes.
In South Florida in June:
6:30 p.m. Friday: Dania Jai-Alai, $100
9:30 a.m. Sunday: Palm Beach Princess Casino, $100
2:30 p.m. June 19: Isle Casino & Racing, $900
6:30 p.m. June 20: Gulfstream Park, $150
6:30 p.m. June 25: Mardi Gras Gaming & Racetrack, $100
1 p.m. June 27: Palm Beach Kennel Club, $200
More information is at AnteUpMagazine.com/tour.