The Cash Game Festival hopes to follow up on successful trips to Estonia, England, and Malta with 120 hours of non-stop cash game action brought to you from the Platinum Casino, Bulgaria.
First, it was arm wrestling, then darts, followed by the pool league. Everything had a gambling angle to it. We would play cards, but it wasn’t often – Shoot The Pool and 3-Card Brag were the mainstays although we would sometimes play Pontoon.
Then one day a friend got into the World Poker Tour (WPT) on TV. It was the same time as his stag weekend in Las Vegas. He turned up at the pub one week with a deck of cards and some chips and taught us all how to play this game called poker.
When we arrived in Vegas, we hardly knew the rules. It helped. We opened 100% of hands. We were hyper-aggressive. We were the Scandinavians before the Scandinavians, except they knew what they were doing and we didn’t have a clue.
When we got home, we kept our shirt on, left the darts on the board, sold the pool cues on Ebay and started a poker school. It was a £30 Freezeout. It was a cheap way to have a great night and a few beers.
And then Gary and Eddie turned up. Two old timers who told us mythical tales about games called Seven Card Stud with a Spit and Razz. They introduced us to cash games, and before you knew it, nobody wanted to play the £30 Freezeout anymore.
It was all cash, cash, cash.
What Would Happen If We Only Played Cash Games?
Poker enthusiasts Enri Orav and Martin “Franke” von Zweigbergk gave this a lot of thought in 2013 and came up with the rather brilliant idea of hosting a Cash Game Festival.
It was a stunning success.
Festivals have been held in Estonia, England, and at the Casino Malta as recently as June. Each festival contains over 120 consecutive hours of cash game action. You can play as many types of cash games as you can imagine for all stakes, and best of all, you aren’t stuck in a tournament waiting for your life to ebb away.
The beauty of the cash games and the reason everyone loves them so much is the flexibility they provide. There is also the bonus of longevity. Reload, reload, reload.
Cash games also create an unbelievable atmosphere.
People forget that poker is a game played for fun, and the seriousness of the tournament doesn’t follow you into the cash game arena. With the finality of the exit removed all that remains is a chilled out vibe.
Next Stop Bulgaria
The latest iteration of the Cash Game Festival will take place in Bulgaria at the Platinum Casino. The action takes place 31 Aug and won’t stop until 5 Sep. The event organisers will be streaming specialised tables live over the Internet and PokerNews will also be on hand to do a spot of live reporting.
And this isn’t the end of the action.
There is another event planned for October, which is currently shrouded in secrecy, before the event returns to the place where it all began, Tallinn, Estonia in Nov 2016.
Things have come a long way since I was arm wrestling for £10 a match.