Hosting a poker night can be daunting, especially if it’s your first time. Hitting the jackpot with ambiance, food, and cocktails may be challenging but possible. Here’s a guide to help you host a seamless and perfect poker party at home.
Choose Who to Invite Wisely
The kind of people you invite would ruin or make your poker night a success. Since the night is all about poker, it’s best to invite friends or colleagues who are poker players or are interested in the game. This way, you’ll be confident that your team will have something to discuss while playing. It’s also important to consider your capacity when inviting people and estimate the number you can comfortably host before sending your invitations. Traditional home poker is best when played by 6-7 players, although a maximum of 10 people at a table is okay.
Personality type is another crucial aspect when picking poker night pals. So, go for composed and sober people with whom you get along well. Avoid friends you know are likely to cause tension during the night.
Ensure You have all Poker Essentials
Investing in poker accessories can be expensive, but it doesn’t have to be. The first accessory to consider is the poker table. A well-made and visually appealing poker table would impress everyone and make them want to return. If you don’t have one yet, you can quickly get a poker table for sale at a relatively fair price without stretching your pockets. Or you can improvise and use your regular dining table covered in an excellent poker table cover. Besides the table, you’ll need to have some decent chips and playing cards.
Having poker accessories alone is not enough for a successful poker night. Finding the right spot, comfortable chairs, cushions, and adequate lighting can make the difference.
Determine the Game Format
Establishing the game format in advance can come in handy when hosting a poker night. Decide what type of poker you’ll be playing beforehand so that your guests can come prepared to win. Will your poker be a dealer’s choice or a mixed game? Will you guys play Omaha, Texas Hold ’em, or Seven Card Stud? Deciding the stakes and the chip’s worth is also critical. Get to know whether the game will be a tournament or a cash game. Once you’ve decided the format of the game and all that, inform your team of the same. You can also note the information and display it near your playing table. This way, nobody will be lost.
Keep the Game Friendly
Hosting a poker night is more about friendship than the game. So, don’t charge a fee for your pals to play. When it comes to buy-in amount, ensure you get a feel of your friends’ comfort level and have prior knowledge of their tolerance of losing money. Remember, poker night is about strengthening your friendship, not the opposite. And setting the game such that one can lose lots of cash is a recipe for failure. So, establish the buy-in high enough to be appealing yet tolerable should the worst happen.
Be a Good Host
On the final day, ensure everyone is comfortable, has a good time, and is treated well. Simple things in preparing and welcoming guests can go a long way in making them happy. Remember to have breaks when playing and ensure no one drives after heavy drinking. Don’t also forget to ask your guests occasionally if there’s something they need, water, beer, or more food.
Entertainment and Food
Good music, food, and drinks are essential components of a successful poker night. For entertainment, ensure you think of the guests you’re hosting before settling on any choice. Some guests may find movies appealing, while others prefer strippers or classical music. Whatever the case, try to avoid visual entertainment as it can distract people from the game.
The choice of foods and drinks also matters. So, ensure there’s a buffet server with a variety of foods. Pizza, chips/dip/salsa, grilled, crockpot, and finger foods are great choices. Having mobile trays at the table between players can make eating more convenient and save on space.
As for the drinks, consider your guests first before making a decision. You wouldn’t want to serve whiskey to your church friends, nor would you like to serve bottled water to your bowling buddies. One thing to remember is that well-fed guests are happy.
Hosting poker nights can be an excellent way of socializing, making new friends, and taking a break from a busy life schedule. With the information on how to host the perfect poker night, what remains are for you to start planning and finally have fun.