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Poker News | World Series of Poker | WSOP2009 | The Works

Charity Opportunities Abound at 2009 WSOP

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It is no secret that poker players tend to be quite generous when it comes to various charitable opportunities and causes. Over the past few years, the number of poker tournament fundraisers has grown exponentially as well-known poker pros enjoy hosting and attending such events, and the money and awareness raised for charities tends to be quite a bit more than a drop in the bucket. The World Series of Poker has also begun to embrace the concept and become a staunch supporter of numerous charities over the past few years. And it just might outdo itself during the summer of the 2009 WSOP.

The World Series in Las Vegas will offer a mix of diverse opportunities for poker players and fans to contribute to various causes this year, some of them very affordable and simple to do.

This is not the first year that the WSOP has partnered with the Nevada Cancer Institute, and the organizations are again pleased to join forces to raise funds for cancer research and patient care. The Nevada Cancer Institute is the state’s premier cancer facility, and each year at the WSOP Main Event, poker pro Phil Gordon uses his Bad Beat on Cancer organization to raise funds by asking all participants in the event to pledge to donate one percent of their winnings to the cause. The Bad Beat on Cancer fund is part of the Nevada Cancer Institute, and players will again have the opportunity to donate at the 2009 main event.

In addition, the WSOP has done something new by establishing a payout program in all of the 56 preliminary bracelet events as well. When players cash in any of those events at the cashier’s desk, they can announce that they will donate one percent of their winnings to the Nevada Cancer Institute, and it will automatically be deducted from the player’s winnings and forwarded on to the organization. The player will also receive a letter from the Nevada Cancer Institute for accounting purposes because all donations are tax-deductible.

Another way that players, along with fans, friends, and family, can donate to a worthy cause is simply by purchasing specialty women’s clothing in any WSOP retail outlet, including those set up at the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas. The “Clothing With Heart” campaign has been established to benefit the Nevada Cancer Institute by offering stylish “Queens of Heart” merchandise like shirts and hats and donating a portion of the sales proceeds to the charity.

For players at the 2009 WSOP looking for a way to relax between tournaments, on breaks, or after a tough elimination, there will again be an exclusive VIP players’ lounge set up across from the Amazon Room. The security guarded room called the “Aces Club” assures players their privacy from the madness that can take over the hallways of the Rio’s convention center area during the WSOP, and memberships are available to any player for a fee, a large portion of which will be donated to the Nevada Cancer Institute.

The last opportunity for the Nevada Cancer Institute fundraising will be at the hands of the media. During the annual Media Charity Tournament, this year to be held on July 9, all final table players will have donations made in their names to the Nevada Cancer Institute, courtesy of the World Series of Poker.

And finally, the Ante Up for Africa charity poker tournament will hold its third annual event at the 2009 WSOP. But when the event is held this year on July 2, it will be filmed by the ESPN camera crews for its first-time broadcast on the network in the fall. Players can buy in for $5,000 to the no-limit hold’em tournament and play side-by-side with some of the biggest names in Hollywood and poker, such as Phil Hellmuth, Howard Lederer, Matt Damon, Sarah Silverman, Herschel Walker, and hosts Don Cheadle and Annie Duke. Players are then encouraged to donate all or part of their winnings to the Ante Up for Africa charity to benefit refugees of the war-torn region of Darfur, Sudan.

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