Stay cool this summer with hot action in Arizona

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For many poker players, June signifies the start of the World Series of Poker in Las Vegas for the next seven weeks. Because of our proximity to Sin City, Arizonans flock to the Rio Hotel & Casino in droves to take their shot at big paydays and possible stardom. If you’re remaining in the Valley of the Sun, you still have plenty of choices when it comes to tournaments and cash games.

FORT MCDOWELL: The poker room has 15 weekly tournaments and an Aces Cracked promotion that allows you to win $300 each time your pocket aces don’t win.

TALKING STICK RESORT: The Arena Poker Room is one of the premier cardrooms in the country and offers players almost any game and limit they desire. Along with its daily tournaments, the Arena Poker Room at Talking Stick has nightly tourneys Monday-Thursday and larger scale events nearly every weekend.

If you’re trying to avoid temperatures in the 100s this summer in Las Vegas or the Phoenix area, plan an escape to one of the many casinos in the Northern half of the state. Destinations such as Hon-Dah, Cliff Castle, Twin Arrows, and Bucky’s offer guests a resort-style atmosphere with plenty of amenities.

While all of these casinos will have regular poker action, you also can fish, boat, camp and enjoy the cool weather in the mountains.
As the WSOP winds down, much of the focus in Arizona turns toward the Arizona State Poker Championship held each year at Talking Stick Resort.

This is Arizona’s most prestigious event and many pros have this tournament circled on their calendars. Single-table satellites run around the clock for this $1,050 buy-in event that always has a prize pool topping a million dollars.

Plan to attend the 10th annual Arizona Poker Championship in early August.

BUCKY’S CASINO: The poker hosts an $80 Omaha/8 tournament on June 22 at 2 p.m. Players can earn extra starting chips for playing live before the tourney. As a nice bonus, $200 per table will be added to the prize pool.

Bucky’s also hosts its annual Northern Arizona Hold’em Championship this summer. Qualifying rounds will begin in July.

HON-DAH: To wrap up the Northern Arizona casino news this month, Hon-Dah would like to congratulate Josh Phillips, left, as its newest Tournament of Champions winner.

— Email Chris at cronin@anteupmagazine.com.