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Finding Poker Games

Finding Games - You Better Belize It!
By Loki Luchs of

A few years back, before the poker craze, I found myself working harder to find a game of poker than I was actually in the game itself. Enough people new how to talk the talk, but not a lot of people actually could get a regular game together. Other than the casino, which was a two hour drive each way, I rarely could find a game that would survive more than a couple of weeks. One of the best parts of the post-media revolution is that this is no longer the case! It doesn’t matter where you go, if you want to find a game, all you have to do is look in the right places.

I recently went to Belize for that age-old tradition of a honeymoon. My wife and I spent 4 days in the jungles, 2 days hiking Mayan ruins, and then 7 days in San Pedro on the beautiful Ambergris Caye. One of those nights we spent hanging out in a great little bar called Fido’s (pronounced Fee-doze) right in downtown San Pedro. Fido’s is right on the beach and has a cover band playing 5 nights a week. While watching a professional coconut-picker climb forty feet into the rafters, a local began chatting with us over a few Cuban cigars. He quickly began talking poker and before you know it, he was inviting us to any of the local games that regularly convened in the city. We politely declined, but thanked him for the offer. Several days later, as we were poking our way through the markets, a familiar face popped up in one of the shops. The local was headed back to Fido’s to reconvene in their weekly game. The stakes were affordable, so both my wife and I took our spending money and bought in.


Backroom games, like this one, are often very friendly and the players are there for social reasons, rather than financial ones. I prefer a good backroom game to a casino or home game any day of the week. The backroom games I’ve found over the years, this one included, have been full of lively characters who like to gamble. For serious players, these games can be the bread and butter for their bankrolls. Many of the backroom games I’ve found have been frequented by company owners or upper-class business men who are drawn to the mystique of having a special place for their game. Many of these rich fish are looking for a light-hearted atmospheres and a place to unwind; these games provide the perfect place for these players to enjoy themselves, gamble, and not have to worry about the fierce competition of a casino.

If you’re looking for a backroom game, you will not have much of a problem finding one these days. The first places you need to check are local bars, pool halls, and bowling alleys. Many of them will have “tournament nights” or a backroom game that occurs on a regular basis. Depending on how strict local authorities are on gambling enforcement, you may need to become a regular face before they feel comfortable giving you an invitation to join the game. This is for their security as well as yours! Some areas do raid poker games, but this is usually something that is well publicized in those districts. Most games are long running and are always open for recruitment to keep enough regulars to keep the game alive. If you’re looking for a regular haunt, you may find that there’s no better room than the backroom!

My thanks to the locals in Belize! My wife and I greatly enjoyed our night with you all! Don’t be afraid to keep inviting those kind-hearted tourists, as it made us feel very welcome to be there. We hope all of your cards are live and your pots are monsters!


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