Entrants to the 2012 WSOP Vancouver circuit event play in the main theatre at the River Rock Casino & Resort. Photo by: Kevin Statham / Great Canadian Gaming on October 30, 2012
River Rock Casino Resort poker leaderboards and stats of the top players. BEST ONLINE POKER ROOM BONUSES. Americas Cardroom 100% up to $1,000 Bovada Poker 100% up to $500. River Rock Sportsbook & Grill - Restaurant is temporarily closed. River Rock Sportsbook & Grill - Bar is open Saturday & Sunday 10a - 12am. Gather your friends and family and head to River Rock Sportsbook & Grill to enjoy great food while you watch your favorite teams play on our 60 TV screens. Gaming at River Rock. River Rock Casino offers a wide array of gambling options including more than 1,150 of the latest slot machines, featuring progressives, video poker, and video keno; and approximately 20 gaming tables featuring Blackjack, Progressive Pai Gow Poker, Mini-Baccarat, Three Card Poker with 6 card bonus with progressive, Ultimate Texas Hold'em with progressive, and Spanish 21.
River Rock was a standard indian casino for years and only recently (Dec 2005?) decided to start spreading poker. But they did a nice job of it! They cleared a section of their no-smoking room (called the Dry Creek Room) in the back of the casino and put in five tables, with nice spacing. River Rock Casino. River Rock Casino is located 2 hours north of San Francisco. We were enticed to visit the casino last year by a $100 e-cash promotion. At least we both came out ahead for the trip. There weren't a lot of penny slots to play but we did find some different ones to try out.
The River Rock Casino & Resort hosted the first ever World Series Of Poker event during 2012 in Richmond, BC. This is the first time that the very popular poker tournament was held on Canadian soil. Canadian residents were thrilled that it was hosted in Richmond, BC by Great Canadian Gaming who owns the River Rock Casino & Resort facility. The events were very popular with approximately 1,038 total players entering the $1500 + casino fee buy-in main event.
Thousands of poker players entered the live tournaments which took place across 11 days during late October and early November, 2012. Many poker players stayed in Richmond for the entire 11 days so they could enter several events and enjoy a vacation in beautiful BC, Canada.
Many players who entered the 2012 WSOP events reported having a good time. Playing in the River Rock theatre is very nice on the newer tables during the serious tournaments. It was a mix of social conversation and serious play at the tables when players attempted to win the big prize money and circuit ring.
Roberto Luongo plays at the 2012 WSOP Vancouver circuit event in the main theatre at the River Rock Casino & Resort. Photo by: Kevin Statham / Great Canadian Gaming on October 30, 2012
One player reports having won two circuit rings already, but chooses not to wear them during the events. When asked why, he notes that it makes him a target during the events and decides to fly under the radar. The players at this type of event take it very seriously.
Many players came from either Alberta or the United States. The larger events with elevated buy-in amounts attracted a wide variety of poker players. The official designation of WSOP circuit event also attracted players from far away to travel and participate in the various WSOP events.
It was interesting to play the 2012 tournament using chips that were not marked WSOP. The chips were marked BC Poker Championships. It is not clear why the casino decided not to use actual WSOP marked chips. This aspect of the tournaments is reported by some players to have taken away from the overall experience a bit. Some players claimed that it would have been better to have nice looking, quality WSOP chips to add to the overall poker experience. During an interview the VP of the casino Howard Blank mentions that when there are two tournaments held in the same theatre, two separate chip sets are used for security purposes.
The casino setup for the tournaments in the theatre with the very large ceilings was very nice. Spectators could watch from the lower and upper theatre areas. The casino dealers were working the tables very well at the two tables that a staff member of The Whistler News played at. Bright lights and calm are the aspects when the tournaments start. As the levels went by, players started to talk more and the sound of poker chips could be heard all around.
The elevated buy-in amounts and serious nature of the circuit event gave the tournament a very professional aspect. Many of the entrants play poker full-time for a living. Others have real day jobs and entered the tournaments as part of a Summer vacation.
Some players saved for months in order to be able to enter several of the 2012 WSOP Vancouver circuit events. One Canadian citizen says that he decided to play tournament poker instead of trying to qualify for the Winter Olympics and represent Canada because the poker tournaments are 'more fair' where there is no political interference. More specifically, if you win the WSOP tournament you receive the prize every time, guaranteed and the casino will never go against the points list. The Canadian government refuses to guarantee the allocation of the Winter Olympic quota spots in the order of the points list. Some athletes view the poker tournaments as a 'more fair' and when given the choice, will choose the poker every time instead of attempting to represent their own country at the Olympics. It is interesting to watch as the 2010 Winter Olympics came to Vancouver / Whistler and some local athletes decided to play poker instead of compete because poker tournaments are 'more fair'. At the same time, the Canadian government wonders why the country wins fewer medals at the Winter Olympics than other comparable countries after threatening their own athletes into quitting.
The new WSOP circuit events held in Canada, makes it easier for locals to live the poker rockstar dream by having very large tournaments available. Poker tournaments with large buy-ins and thousands of entrants are a requirement for most poker rockstars.
The River Rock Casino & Resort website can be viewed at: http://www.riverrock.com
Many poker players are hoping that the WSOP circuit event returns to BC, Canada during 2013. The VP for the casino who is Howard Blank notes that no decision to host a 2013 WSOP circuit event has been made by Great Canadian Gaming.
The next big event at the River Rock Casino is the BC Poker Championships and the specific dates have yet to be announced.
The WSOP Circuit continues Thursday, November 8, 2012 at Harvey's Lake Tahoe, USA. Some players follow the circuit from city to city playing the live tournaments.
History Of Poker At River Rock Casino
The River Rock Casino has a long history of poker. The poker room at this casino has been open for many years. The poker room was originally located inside in the upstairs area of the main River Rock building.
Current State Of Poker At River Rock Casino
Over the years there have been many changes to the poker room at the River Rock casino. When the new building was completed across the street, the River Rock casino rented space in it and moved the poker room. After the poker room was moved across the street, many players expressed their concerns about their experiences at the new location and stopped going.
Vancouver, BC has a very large percentage of Asian language speaking people. The nature of the civilian population demographics is reflected in the languages spoken by players at the poker tables in any casino. The issue of what language should be spoken at the table appears to be a complicated one. The pit boss at the Edgewater casino notes that the non-English table talk cannot take place during a hand. So if the dealer speaks the non-English language, such conversations between players between hands is allowed. If the dealer does not speak the non-English language then the non-English table conversations between players between hands is not allowed. This is the current understanding of the complicated issue and would explain why some dealers enforce the English only rule at their table and some do not. It is believed that all the casinos encourage English only, but do not always enforce it to be sensitive to those who do not speak any English to begin with. You should definitely be aware of this aspect when going to any casino to play in a live cash game. If you run into this scenario where you are surrounded by people not speaking English at any casino you should ask the pit boss for a table change. Never demand at the casino that the table speak English only.
BCLC has agreed to review the question and the response from Howard Blank and then respond with their own position on the subject that the language related question raises.
Summary Of Poker At River Rock Casino
The poker room at the River Rock Casino is one of several large poker room in the Vancouver, BC area. The large populations in the immediate area allow for the poker room to stay open 24 hours a day. There is lots of free parking available and also two restaurants to choose from. The facility is nice looking and is located right along the water in Richmond, BC. The building and poker room faces the same challenges that all casinos face from day to day. The poker room is open 24 hours a day and is usually more busy on the weekends. The betting amounts can be very large at times on just the $1 / $2 tables when there are no larger tables such as $2 / $5 or $5 / $10 open due to lack of players available. Some poker players choose to avoid the cash game tables and just play in just the larger buy-in tournaments. Usually tournaments that are $100 or more draw a more serious crowd of players.
Summary Of Poker In The Sea To Sky Corridor
The Whistler News publication staff after being a patron of the various casinos in BC recommends only participation in the larger tournament events such as the BC Poker Championships, World Poker Tour or WSOP Circuit events. There is a very large difference in how the poker games are administered between online Internet cash game poker tables and in-person cash game casino poker tables. If you are used to playing online poker in Whistler, remember that when you go to play in-person at the casino cash games irrespective of which one, the table will most likely be a lot different than what you are used to when playing online. You need to be aware of the difference and be prepared to navigate it in real time. If you are unprepared for the difference, it might frustrate you and set you on tilt while you play for hundreds of dollars per hand. Some examples based upon previous personal experiences are noted below about cash game poker tables in general irrespective of which casino:
- Players are very often hesitant to show their cards when they are supposed to according to the rules and the hands do not open like online poker games. Be prepared not to be able to see cards when the rules state that you should be able to. Technically you can ask the dealer to 'open' a hand, but doing that may offend some players at the tables especially the one that you just won against and then rude comments follow. Never ask for a hand to be 'opened'. Just do not show your cards to conceal your information because when they muck you automatically win the pot.
- Some players can be very rude in conversation at times when sitting around the poker table cash games. This live cash game poker player syndrome is called being 'prickly'. Watch what you say at all times and try not to talk at all. Bring a hat or headphones which will help to keep quiet and hide any of your external tells.
- The dealers sometimes make big mistakes that directly affect the poker game action. You should always use a chip protector when playing in any live in-person cash game. Always be polite to the poker table dealers.
- Washing your hands before, during and after each in-person cash game is recommended because some people have colds or seasonal flu. The contact with the chips is an easy way to get sick if you do not wash your hands often. Many casinos offer hand sanitizer and soap in the washrooms.
- The players sometimes make actions that are in contravention of the posted poker table rules and the dealers do not stop them. It happens, learn to tolerate it or leave but never contest it.
- Be prepared to sit through hours of non-English conversation from other players such as Mandarin / Cantonese at the poker table cash games. The casinos are potentially going to allow this and after a few hours it might start to get on your nerves. You can technically ask for a table change, which may or may not help based upon who is at your new table or if there is limited tables to begin with.
- Some players who play live poker at the $1 / $2 cash games smell very bad like cigarettes and/or beer for example. A table change without saying anything is always your best move here.
- The 'show one, show all' rule is not always enforced by the poker table dealers. Do not expect to see cards all the time like you do when playing online. Do not let it put you on tilt or frustrate you. It is most likely going to happen irrespective of which casino you go to. Learn to tolerate it or go back to playing online. Avoid calling any players out on this rule.
- The $1 / $2 blind cash game structure in a cash game is not usually reflective of the size of betting. If you sit at the $1 / $2 no limit table, be prepared to play for a hundred dollars per hand. Some hands will exceed a pot of $1000 at times but usually do not go above $500. The action at the $1 / $2 table is really big and well beyond anything you have ever played in Whistler.
- Make sure to read the rules on the wall of the casino before you start for the first time. After that speak for a moment with the pit boss and become familiar with the in-person cash game setup. Ask any questions you have away from the table.
River Rock Poker Tournament
- Poker players at any casino cash game are easily offended so be polite to everyone. There are a wide variety of people sitting in close quarters so your best bet is to stay very neutral and not draw any attention to yourself. It is perfectly legal for you to literally rob the table blind with your poker play so always concentrate on that financial goal.
The key thing to remember when you are playing poker in any live casino is that it is very different than playing online over the Internet from back home in Whistler. You need to be prepared in advance if you are going to travel down to Vancouver / Squamish / Richmond / Surrey to play poker in one of the live casinos and be aware upfront of the difference in game play to expect. Live cash games have some excellent features such as great conversations, detecting tells from your opponents and the thrill of having a huge chip stack in front of you. However, many poker players report that playing cash game everyday will grind you down into misery irrespective of your track record on the table. It is recommended by many poker players to save up for the larger buy-ins and only play the tournaments. Treat yourself to a one day or a week long vacation by playing larger buy-in tournaments with thousands of entrants and potentially life changing money for the winner which will be you if you can walk the line of poker rockstar.
Live The Poker Rockstar Dream
You have watched live poker on TV before and seen the rockstar lifestyle. Now after saving some poker bankroll money, you are ready to take your shot at being a poker rockstar for real instead of just dreaming about it. You should definitely live your life to the fullest and take your shot at being a poker rockstar like you see on TV. Make sure to be responsible when taking your shot by planning everything in advance and educating yourself. Try to enter only tournaments and prepare yourself as much as you can in advance so you can navigate all of the aspects from how you play, what you eat and where you sleep. Remember, in order to walk the line as a poker rockstar you have to have all of the aspects covered because getting lucky with cards alone is not enough. Previous big tournament winners have stated that poker is just as much about responsible bankroll management as it is about being a skilled player at the table. If you want to be a poker rockstar, you should definitely go for it and give it your best shot since you only live once.
River Rock Kerley
If you live in the Sea To Sky Corridor and want to go to play in an in-person live poker game, The Whistler News publication recommends that you only play the big tournaments at any casino. Save the money in advance and view the week long series of poker tournaments as a holiday. You can make an out of town reservation via telephone with the casino. Then plan a fully featured vacation trip with poker tournaments by day and a nice dinner with show at night after each event.