Turns out there are more ways to make it rich in Bakersfield, Calif., than just striking oil. There are games for all types of gamblers at the Golden West Casino. Card players have their choice of no-limit hold’em, limit hold’em, Omaha, three-card poker, Pai Gow, EZ baccarat and blackjack.
With 34 tables to choose from, you’ll be sure to find the cash game that thrills you. Limit games are $2-$4, $3-$6 kill and $4-$8 kill, and NLHE games offered are $1-$2, $2-$2, $5-$5 and $5-$10; Omaha/8 $3-$6 and $4-$8. Each Thursday night at 6 they run a NLHE VIP $5-$10 cash game, which anyone is welcome to play against the regulars. Another great promo is the 2012 for 2012 promo: On the 12th day of every month, starting at noon and ending at midnight, they randomly select a cash table and add $112 to the pot for the next hand played.
If you fancy blackjack, you have to try the Blackjack Switch; Blackjack Switch is a blackjack variant that allows the player to do what’s normally considered a classic cheating maneuver: trading cards between two hands. The player must make two bets of equal size and is allowed to switch the second card dealt. Great game!
The tournament schedule at Golden West has some of the best action in the Central Valley. Daily tournaments have a $45 buy-in with two rebuys and 7K in chips. The only day of the week this tourney changes is on Wednesday ($65, no rebuys, 8K chips).
The last Saturday of every month is the popular $10K guarantee deepstack tournament ($150, 15K chips, 30-minute blinds). This tournament’s prize pool usually reaches $12K-$13K.
The most anticipated tournament is the $50K World Series qualifier. The top-two players each receive a $12,000 package to the WSOP main event, while other top finishers earn the remainder of the prize pool. The WSOP qualifier is June 9 ($340).
Golden West, celebrating its 16th anniversary this year, is close to downtown Bakersfield and the Kern County fairgrounds, operating in the legendary landmark that was formally Maison Jaussad’s Restaurant.
For more information, go to goldenwestcasino.net or call 661-324-6936.
TACHI PALACE: Zeferino Hernandez of Chowchilla, Calif., beat 104 runners to earn the $10,000 seat to the WSOP main event and $2,000 in spending money. Zeferino was third in chips with three players remaining, but quickly doubled through the chipleader and cruised from there.
— Leslie Pauls is the Ante Up Ambassador for Central California and pro poker player. Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.