The Small Town Poker Tour has received quite a bit of attention in the United States. The STPT basically travels the country looking for the "best of the best" of the amateur world in small home games and bar tournaments, far away from the mainstream of the poker world. "We are going to take poker back to where it all started," Mark Fracalossi, the Executive Producer for the STPT, said. "Everyone views the shows now with their high stakes and flashy sets, but the roots of poker can be found in every small town in the world." The STPT was even a sponsor for the recent Vince Neil "Off The Strip" Poker Tournament in Las Vegas, which raised over a million dollars for the T. J. Martell Foundation. It is a group that continues to grow as poker continues to reach an even greater audience.
As they look to start traveling the country for the second season of the tour, the STPT is now looking outside of the U. S. for the first time. "The continued interest in the upcoming U. S. Tour has lead us to push up the date for the European Small Town Poker Tour Championships," said Fracalossi. "The format will be the same as the U. S. Tour, to help raise money for charity along the way and crown one champion. We are also working on a few European sponsors and a television deal."
There is a television deal in place for the second season of the U. S. STPT as the tour attempts to hit all fifty states this season in search of the best amateur players around. The tour will film at each locale, then bring all the winners to a casino to be named later to play for the championship of the season. This will also be the format for the European version that will be kicking off in the near future. There are also plans to expand the STPT into Canada and Asia as well. "We are serious about making the STPT the finest amateur poker tour in the world," Fracalossi added. Don't expect the pomp and circumstance of the World Poker Tour or World Series broadcasts, however. "Our show and tour is unique. The finals will be in a casino, but the rest of the show is a tour of the world," Fracalossi stated.
While the prestige of winning the title may be important, it is critical to stress the charitable involvement of the STPT. At each location, the players are playing what amounts to a charity event, which is something that Fracalossi finds important. "The money we raise will stay local. It's a chance for all poker players to come and give something back to their community and a chance to be the STPT Champion. Our goal is the find the best amateur player in the world," Fracalossi emphasized.
While the U. S. second season gets ready to start, be looking for the European version of the Small Town Poker Tour! To learn more about the schedule of the STPT or to nominate your city for a chance to play on the Tour, be sure to visit the Small Town Poker Tour website at smalltownpokertour.com.
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