Hollywood Poker Open hits Hollywood Lawrenceburg Nov. 15

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Hollywood Casino in Lawrenceburg, Ind., will host its Hollywood Poker Open on Nov. 15-24. The 25-event schedule will have a $345 opener with three Day 1s, a seniors and a ladies tournament. The $675 buy-in HPO mini-series main event will be Nov. 23. See the ad in our November issue.

NIRO’S INFLUENCE: The decade following the turn of the century, Chicagoland poker rooms experienced sweeping changes paving the way on how they’re currently run. Back then limit poker was played, no tournaments, no bad beats, not even automatic suffers were available.

Working his way up the ranks, Dom Niro was involved with many changes. Niro, who started at the Showboat in 1997, worked under four casino names while watching poker rooms come and go. For Niro, it was all about poker and its players, becoming a valuable link between upper management and the poker room.

Niro was part the team that started the state’s first bad beat, submitted NW Indiana’s first tournament along with Chicagoland’s first weekly no-limit tournaments. Seeing a nationwide trend with tournament popularity, Niro greatly expanded Majestic Star’s weekly tournament schedule. (Majestic Star has an HPT event Nov. 22-Dec. 8, by the way.)

At Harrah’s East Chicago, Niro watched over the Midwest’s biggest limit games. He was the key figure with the Heartland Poker Tour’s first televised event in Chicagoland.

“I have worked with some great people like Jeremy Smith, Amanda Alavarez, Nick Zachny, Greg Nichols, Mike Soto, Jason Gregorec and Dave Schugar and many more who are now spread out across the USA,” said Niro who runs the Daytona Beach Kennel Club’s poker room. Today, Niro’s influence in Chicagoland’s poker rooms is still present with the many employees who have worked under him.
“Having worked with Dom for over eight years, he has always been an influential figure with the way I manage the poker room, always making customer service a high priority,” Smith said.

WSOPC: Horseshoe Southern Indiana’s World Series of Poker Circuit’s re-entry event had 546 entries with a 1$64K pool. William Firebaugh from Indianapolis won the title and $34K.

— Email “Chicago” Joe Giertuga at chicago.joe@comcast.net.