Seniors find spotlight at World Series

Jul 4, 2005 12:55 AM

Carol, good luck on your Junior/Senior charity poker tournament next week (July 10-12) over at The Orleans. I know for the past few years that you and The Orleans have teamed up and had a wonderful event.

The Orleans is where all the poker players of legal age who have been approved to play in their poker room have had fun and helped out with The Seniors Charities. And some lucky poker player will walk off with $100,000.

I was honored this past Saturday to again host The Seniors tournament at the World Series of Poker currently being held at The Rio in Las Vegas.

There were an unprecedented 825 registrants in the $1,000 buy-in, No Limit Hold’em event. Although the winner hadn’t been crowned at press time, the table leaders included Marc Durand of Henderson, Paul McKinney, Mike "Shoes" Gambony, James Guiry of Las Vegas and Paul Vilandos.

Yes, there were seniors who were born on or before July 2, 1955 and put up $1,000 for their chance to see who was the best senior no limit hold’em poker playing champion of the world.

I inaugurated The Seniors at the World Series a few years ago when The Seniors World Championship of Poker merged its logo with the World Series of Poker. The combined seniors world championship event was held at the old Horseshoe in beautiful downtown Las Vegas.

Yes, believe it are not, I have won The Seniors world championship and have added that skin to the other skins on the wall at our Thousand Pines ranch in the high country of Arizona.

But lately I haven’t played. I just meet and visit with my poker playing buddies from around the world when they come to play at poker and charity events at the World Series, The Orleans, the Golden Nugget, Foxwoods or the world famous Aviation Club on the Champs Elysee in Paris, France.

This year on September 30, I will not host the poker event but will be honored to be the guest at my birthday poker tournament party in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

It will mark No. 78 for me — I am getting younger — and I have played now with five generations of poker players. It is fun when I talk with younger players who often ask when they can play in the Seniors WCOP.

If they tell me that they are 30 or so, I tell them I’ll be waiting for them to join me in 2025 —when I will only be 108 years old!

For now, I invite everyone to come and have poker birthday cake with me in Tulsa, and get their share of the green money at the Cherokee Nations’ new hotel and casino in Tulsa.

I am going to join with the Cherokee Nations to create the Oklahoma Poker Players Hall of Fame and Museum in the new hotel tower that they are building.

Then I will host in April 2006 The Oklahoma Johnny Golf/Gin/Poker Tournament in Tulsa. This poker event will be filmed for TV and will award $1,000,000 to the winner.

For now, Carol says I have to stop all the poker talk and feed the dog and go get a haircut.

Oklahoma Johnny Poker Tip of the Week

My dad taught me many things about life, poker and business. Here are a few of them.

"Son, money is not heavy to carry".

"You cannot trade out of an empty wagon"

"Don’t lie"

"Be good to the cook"

Now, if you want the complete list, come to

And here is your poker tip of the week: Raise the pot at every opportunity.

Until next time, remember to stay lucky.