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Poker Makeover: Improvements at Turning Stone

Poker Makeover: Improvements at Turning Stone 0001

With poker's rise in popularity over the past decade, most casinos have seen the need to open poker rooms or expand existing facilities to accommodate the continually growing numbers of players. The Oneida Indian Nation's Turning Stone Resort and Casino in Verona, New York is no different. Beginning in 1999, Turning Stone's Poker Room got by with 22 tables, but the need to grow was evident during the past few years.

Poker Director Jason DiBenedetto spoke of the reason for growth. "We're always very busy, especially on the weekends, when we either have to turn people away or they have to wait hours to get a seat." In order to better serve the poker public, the Poker Room was enlarged by 50%, adding 10 more tables, more space between the tables for staff and players, and a dedicated registration desk for tournaments.

In addition, the décor has been updated to reflect an older, more elegant atmosphere with an Italian theme. Marble columns and wood-inlaid recessed ceilings, along with subtle shades of brown, gold, and yellow, give it a rustic overtone. And conversely, to keep the room contemporary, two large, flat panel screens have been set up in plain view of the players and passers-by - one for player wait lists, and the other for news and sports broadcasts.

Turning Stone decided to also relocate the room to its original location, near the Bingo Hall main entrance. With the ability to now enable 320 players to take part in the action, the well-traversed setting is ideal.

Turning Stone's Poker Room is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and provides regular games of Seven Card Stud, Omaha, Hold'em, and Seven Card Stud Hi-Lo. There are also regular tournaments, though they have been set aside this month to make way for their famous May Mania and Fourth Annual Turning Stone Resort and Casino Poker Classic. The Classic is a series of No Limit Hold'em tournaments that will take place from May 12 - May 21.

Ed Note: Heads up is the purest form of poker. Great heads up action always at Pacific Poker

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