River City makes final HPT adjustments

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The Heartland Poker Tour at River City Casino, which was still running as Ante Up went to press, dodged a huge bullet just a few weeks before the event came to town.

The event was scheduled to be played in Judy’s Velvet Lounge inside the casino to accommodate the expected increase in players, but it was determined the video poker bar was on the barge and the lounge and stage were on the dock. This required a redesign with tables placed outside the poker room. Why?

“Missouri law limits all gambling to the floating portion of the licensed gaming facility,” Missouri Gaming Commission enforcement manager Les Hahn said.

While the MGC can be seen as inflexible, it has come quite far in accommodating large tournaments. Buy-in limits were removed in 2008 and tournament buy-in procedures and operations have improved with each tournament series.

The list of approved games, which makes for good variety for a series, includes hold’em, stud (five- and seven-card), five-card draw, Omaha and pineapple.

The MGC was created when riverboat casinos were approved in 1992. Riverboat casinos began cruising on two-hour excursions, but this evolved into floating barges in moats, which enabled casinos to be designed to look like buildings that merged the barges with the dockside buildings. Look for River City’s HPT results in our next issue.

— Don Matusofsky is Ante Up’s Missouri Ambassador. You can email him at anteupdonm@gmail.com.