As a kick-off event to The Grand Poker Series at the Golden Nugget Hotel & Casino this month, Montel Williams hosted a charity poker tournament to benefit his multiple sclerosis organization. The event took place on Friday, June 6th at the Golden Nugget in downtown Las Vegas.
The evening, which was called “Cards, Celebrities, and a Cause,” started with a red carpet arrival period and cocktail reception at approximately 5pm in the hotel registration lobby, and the charity poker tournament began at 6pm. The buy-in was $1000 + $80, with proceeds going to benefit the Montel Williams MS Foundation.
Not only was the charity tournament being hosted for a worthy cause, but it also kicked off a month’s worth of tournaments. The inaugural poker series called The Grand, scheduled to run from June 6th to July 6th, features tournaments with buy-ins ranging from $225 to $1080 and is being touted as a reasonably priced alternative to the World Series of Poker. The series, the name of which was inspired by the recent poker mockumentary film called The Grand, also marks the grand opening of The Grand Events Center, a new space designed for conferences and special events like poker tournaments.
Montel Williams hosted the event to benefit his MS charity and has adopted the Golden Nugget Poker room as his home poker room and plays there frequently when he’s in Las Vegas. Poker Operations Manager, John Colville, presented a $25,000 gift to Montel for the MS Foundation on behalf of the poker players.
Matthew May, a 29 year old from London England on vacation in Vegas, happened to spot the advertisement for Montel’s tournament while he was in the Golden Nugget. The rest is history as Matthew won a coveted gold bracelet – given to each winner of the Grand Series – and $8,400 for his first place finish. Happy holidays, Matthew.
The Montel Williams MS Foundation was established after the TV talk show host and motivational speaker went public with his battle against MS. He founded the organization so that every dollar raised would go toward research dedicated to finding a cure. Therefore, the foundation has been dedicated to furthering the scientific study of multiple sclerosis, provide financial assistance to certain organizations and institutions conducting the most current research, and raising the national awareness about MS.
More information about Montel’s personal story and his MS Foundation can be found at www.MontelMS.org.