By Kris Janisch
Time to check your calendar and raise the stakes: The 2017 Fall Poker Classic at Canterbury Park begins this weekend.
Set for Sept. 30 through Oct. 15, the Fall Poker Classic (FPC) is the premier series of poker tournaments in the Midwest, and the action will be hot in the casino at Canterbury Park.
People come from across the country to play in the Fall Poker Classic each year, said Caris Norberg, a casino manager and part of the Canterbury Park team that puts the series together. While most players hail from the Midwest, there have been people from Alaska and even Australia who have battled on the felt at Canterbury, she said.
There are 33 tournaments spread across the FPC, with a total prize pool of about $1.5 million. Players are encouraged to share their best hands and bad beats on social media using the hashtag #FPC17.
The Fall Poker Classic has something for every player. From $125 buy-in events to the $2,500 High Roller tourney, the Fall Poker Classic brings together players of all bankrolls and abilities.
There are also unique tournaments for those looking for a twist on their regular games, Norberg said, and not just H.O.R.S.E. and Omaha.
The FPC will feature a Tag Team No-Limit Hold’em event, which often draws father-son or husband-wife teams, Norberg said.
“That’s really kind of neat,” she said. “So many times in poker, if you come with a friend or family member, you don’t see them all that much.”
There’s also a Win the Button NLH event, in which the player who wins a pot will have the button on the succeeding hand.
“It is crazy action,” Norberg said.
The Championship Main Event, an $1,100 buy-in No-Limit Hold’em tourney, is a two-day affair, with flights on Oct. 13-14, and those who advance playing Sunday, Oct. 15, to determine a winner.
Meanwhile, the Ultimate $100K event is a major lead-in to the FPC. For just a $175 buy-in, players can take a shot at a guaranteed $100,000 prize pool. The final Day 1 flight is set to begin at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 28.
The sheer volume of tournaments means the casino at Canterbury Park gets expanded a bit over the two weeks of the Fall Poker Classic. Tables are brought to the track area to accommodate the thousands of players who come out for the FPC. And everyone will be able to get a seat, Norberg said, as buy-ins are available through the first few levels of all tournaments.
Canterbury Park officials often solicit player feedback to make adjustments and improvements each year at the FPC, Norberg said. “We want to keep the players happy.”
Still, it’s plenty of work organizing tables and dealers and players and buy-ins and payouts during the two-week Fall Poker Classic.
“It’s a labor of love,” Norberg said.
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