Inner Circle Poker (1 Viewer)

MrBoosh

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One of my favorite things about PCF is being able to see all of the great home games out there in the world!!! Each one is unique and has its own aura and vibes. It is awesome that we can all come together to share our love of poker chips and everything else poker related!!! Along those lines, I thought it was a good time to start this thread to share pictures, stories, and all other happenings of our Inner Circle Poker home game and league.

In the beginning...

I'm sure our story begins in a similar way to a lot of members on this site. @TravNasty and myself had been playing together for a number of years before Inner Circle Poker was actually formed. Our games were small and very unorganized back in those days. We were happy if we could just get a group of 4 or 5 guys together back then. I don't think we ever had a full table back then. Speaking of tables, my first table that we used was an old octagon table that used to be my grandpa's way back in the day. It was hard to pick the cards up off the table because it had a vinyl playing surface with no padding. Here is one of the earliest pics we have of the pre Inner Circle Poker group playing on my first table.

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@TravNasty pictured on the left.

This was one card away from a royal flush. I guess I had to settle for just a king high straight flush that time. ;) You can also see the awesome dice chips. We played $5 buy in tournaments mostly. White chips were worth 10 and black chips were worth 20. We got 30 white chips and 10 black chips to start with. Usually, it was unlimited rebuys with no stop to when you could buy in. The blinds would raise whenever we thought it was a good time to raise them basically. Not very organized at all!!! The cards we used were just cheap free ones that came with the dice chip sets.

The next upgrade to find its way to our games was a new oval table. Kind of like a Barrington but a little bit more heavy duty. Emphasis on the heavy!

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We continued to play small (and not very well organized) tournaments for another year before we started the league.

June of 2022

I had just gotten back from my first trip to Vegas, and I was pretty fired up to play a lot more poker. @TravNasty and I also play in a fantasy football league together and had been wondering if we could put together some kind of similar league but for poker. We did some research on the internet and came across some awesome videos for running tournaments by @Chris Manzoni which eventually led us here to PCF. After finding our way to PCF, we discovered all of the other awesome poker leagues out there and realized that is what we were looking for!

In our tournaments, we have league members and non-league members playing together. Only the league members will score points depending on how they finish. Our scoring system came from homepokertourney.org and works like this:

Points will be awarded after each tournament based off an algorithm that takes into account a number of factors including the number of participants in the tournament, the buy-in cost for the tournament, the individual player's total expense (buy-in + rebuys), and the individual player's finish.

score = SQRT (n * b * b / e) / (f + 1.0)

SQRT = the square root of
n = the number of participants in the tournament
b = the buy-in cost ($) for the tournament
e = the individual player's total expense (buy-in + add-ons + rebuys)
f = the individual player's finish

Each players top 5 highest scores will be counted in determining the season overall winner.

Our First tournament

Our first official tournament was held on June 11th of 2022. We were able to get 8 players for that opening tournament. It was a lot of fun. We used my ceramic Turbo chips from ThePokerStore.com. They are a huge upgrade from the old dice chips that we were all used to playing with.

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We started using the Blinds are Up! app for Android. This was a gamechanger for our tournaments. It kept the game running smoothly and I was able to upload some custom backgrounds into the app with our logo to make things look and feel a little bit cooler.

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We also started using T25 base tournaments with 10000 chips starting stacks. We used all of @Chris Manzoni 's recommendations and started using cut cards and shuffling behind and all the other little things that would make our games feel more professional.

We also ordered some custom dealer buttons from BRProPoker.com. They actually arrived ahead of schedule and we got to use them in our first tournament!

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The Rest of the Season

Like I said earlier, the first tournament was a success. We had fun and things moved along smoothly with the Blinds are Up! app. Now onto our second tournament which we call the Untamed Tournament. It takes place each year after our fantasy football draft for the Untamed Fantasy Football League. We have always played poker after we drafted so we thought, "Why not make this one of our biggest poker events of the year?" We also planned to give away a custom championship bracelet also at this tournament.

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August came and the Untamed Tournament was an even bigger success!!! We had managed to get a record number of players, 13!!! This was the first time we had enough for more than one table. This was awesome! The league was doing well, and our tournaments were growing! This is what we had been hoping for when we created the league!

Throughout the rest of the season our tournaments averaged around 13 to 16 players. We also added a few table toppers from @rjdev7 into the mix.

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Then we started making flyers for our events.

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And at some point along the way, I got tired of paper decks getting ruined so easily. If one drink spills on some cards and they are done. I think the quickest we saw a deck get retired was in 3 hands one night. A drink hit the table and the deck was a goner! I then switched to plastic decks after that. Copag, Faded Spade, Desjgn, and KEM were some that we used throughout the season.

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It seems like decks of cards will always be a personal preference. It is hard to please everyone. The KEM's didn't get into play until late in the season but everyone seemed to enjoy them I think.

One cool thing that we added at the beginning of the season was the Wall of Champions. It is a plaque that we made with the name of every winner from each tournament. If you take first place, then your name will be forever added to the Wall of Champions until the end of eternity!!!!!!!!

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Above are the final results with all the winners from season 1.

Our Main Event Championship winner is listed in gold because gold is the most championy color there is!!!

As the season went on, everyone was competing for first, second, and third place in the season overall rankings. This would earn a free or partial buy in into the Main Event Championship Tournament. First place also won the title of Shark of the Year, got a free buy in to the M.E. tournament, and a first-place trophy created by @TravNasty himself.

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Second place received a free buy in the M.E. Tourney and a 2nd place trophy. And third place got half their buy in covered to the M.E. and a 3rd place trophy.

I ended up in first place for the season, @Bfow0804 took second place, and our non-PCF member Brad (on the right in the very first photo) took third. Another non-PCF member, Steve ended up taking home the victory in our Main Event Championship Tournament. Here is Steve with the coveted hardware. The Main Event Championship bracelet!!!!

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Season 1 was awesome, and it went better than we could have ever hoped for! The growth in play from our first tournament compared to the play at the Main Event was amazing! At the beginning of the season, you would see lots of limped pots and passive play. As the season continued, the play got stronger and stronger. Most of the Main Event was raising and reraising pre flop with few limps. It was really fun because everyone brought their A game!!!! We are looking forward to Season 2 starting later this month!

Thanks for checking out our Inner Circle Poker league!
 

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Wow this is such an awesome origin story! I love that it started with dice chips. Congrats on growing it into something amazing, On a side note how was brpoker to work with i see you ordered from them early but i wasnt sure if your more recent custom chips came from there? I emailed them a question and never heard back so i was wary to send them an order.
 
Wow this is such an awesome origin story! I love that it started with dice chips. Congrats on growing it into something amazing, On a side note how was brpoker to work with i see you ordered from them early but i wasnt sure if your more recent custom chips came from there? I emailed them a question and never heard back so i was wary to send them an order.
Thank you very much! Brpro was very easy to work with. I'll admit that when we ordered the dealer buttons, I had no clue what I was doing when I placed my order. I had a .png file for the dealer button that I sent them and I didn't know how to properly make the edge graphic so I just told them I wanted it to say dealer on the side. They did an awesome job and I was looking forward to ordering more in the future because I knew it would turn out great!

We ordered the Season 1 and 2 member chips from them as well. In the past year I have been attempting to learn Adobe Illustrator so that I can better work on my own graphics. I know enough now to set up a file with properly sized side graphics and the edge graphic in one .ai file. So the last two orders I emailed them the .ai file and they responded both times that the files looked good and were ready to print.

I usually get a response after an order within a day I think confirming that they received everything from me. It usually takes 2 or 3 weeks to get the completed chips back.

Some day in the future I will probably design a custom league set and have them make it. I have always been very happy with their work!!!
 
Exactly the info i was looking for, thanks for the detailed reply. I am going to start with a dealer button order as well, And possibly make adjustments to the art based on how it comes out but i think it would be fun to have a custom ceramic set.
 
I think if you order 10 you can have edge graphics. I figured we would use the extra ones down the road at sometime. Actually I think I might include one in a giveaway here in the near future.
 
Last night we held our Season 2 Opening Tournament for our league. It was a fun night despite my horrible play in the tournament. Here are a couple pregame shots as well as the flyer for last nights tournament.

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I had also worked on some new lighting tricks for when a player would go all in. Here is a video of me testing it out beforehand. It worked pretty well most of the night when we remembered to say the correct trigger phrase to Alexa.

The big winners for the night were all new league members Jeff, RT, and Chazz. Here is the updated Wall of Champions plaque.

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After the tournament a few of us played a cash game until the wee hours of the morning. Here are some random pics of the night.

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Overall, it was a great night for the league! Season 2 is off to an awesome start. Thanks for checking out our updates!
 
Above are the final results with all the winners from season 1.

Our Main Event Championship winner is listed in gold because gold is the most championy color there is!!!
Super cool write-up! Where did you get the wall of champions plaque (and for that matter, the first and second place trophies)? And is it expensive to have someone do the engraving one at a time? I’d love to get something similar for our league (wrapping up our inaugural season over the next couple of months).
 
Super cool write-up! Where did you get the wall of champions plaque (and for that matter, the first and second place trophies)? And is it expensive to have someone do the engraving one at a time? I’d love to get something similar for our league (wrapping up our inaugural season over the next couple of months).
Thank you very much for the kind words! The wood base of the plaque I made myself and the actual part that says "Wall of Champions" I think I ordered from Amazon or Etsy. I have a label maker that I use to create all the names that go onto the WoC.

Brother P-Touch PT- D610BT Business Professional Connected Label Maker

As far as the trophies go, @TravNasty made those. We had a 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place trophies for the season. The plaques on those were ordered from an Etsy page I think. I think they were 5 or 6 bucks each maybe. The stickers with our logo were ordered from Sticker Mule.
 
Hosting my first home game in about 15 years in a couple of months. This post makes me want to start a league/tourney series even more now.
Good luck hosting again! This site is a wealth of information for hosts to pick through to build your poker night anto anything you can dream up! I am honored that we can help to inspire others to host and create great poker nights and awesome leagues for their players!!!
 
Thank you very much for the kind words! The wood base of the plaque I made myself and the actual part that says "Wall of Champions" I think I ordered from Amazon or Etsy. I have a label maker that I use to create all the names that go onto the WoC.

Brother P-Touch PT- D610BT Business Professional Connected Label Maker

As far as the trophies go, @TravNasty made those. We had a 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place trophies for the season. The plaques on those were ordered from an Etsy page I think. I think they were 5 or 6 bucks each maybe. The stickers with our logo were ordered from Sticker Mule.
I’m always amazed by the resourcefulness and creativity of PCF members. My instinct is always to think/ask “where can I buy this.” But y’all do such great DIY stuff.

This plaque looks like engraved metal, not just labels. And the wood is beautiful. Great stuff.
 
The first Holy Schnikey Invitational sponsored by Callahan Auto Parts is a wrap! It was a great night with plenty of crazy action from start to finish. We tied our attendance record with 15 players in the tournament. PCF members @YeaIKno, @Bfow0804, @TravNasty, and myself were all in attendance.

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@Bfow0804 and I both sporting our themed t shirts for the evening.

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@Bfow0804 definitely would have won the award for best shirt for the evening if we had an award.

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Member Steve showing off his Main Event bracelet. He never misses an opportunity to get that thing in the shot! ;)

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I decided to start a tradition of spilling M&M's onto the tables during this tournament. I figured it would be ok since they have a thin candy shell!

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Special thanks goes out to @TravNasty for helping deal after he busted out! That is not a rib at him because he lasted longer than I did. In the tournament. Get your minds out of the gutter!

Eight whiskey sours and I still couldn't win this tournament! ;)

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Congratulations to league member Brad for his big win last night!

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Brad made it up onto the Wall of Champions for a second time now!

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Here is the new flyer for the upcoming Untamed Tournament next month. This is one of our larger tournaments for the year. The winner gets a bracelet for this one! A special thanks goes out to @aaron2786 for creating the kickass Untamed logo for us! He also created the most awesome table topper to go along with the event. It shall be unveiled at a later date. ;)

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Love seeing these threads! Definitely following. My group started with tournaments and evolved into low stakes cash.
 

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