Napa Valley Casino: “When He Came Back, $92,000 Was Spread Out on the Table”


Recently, PocketFives published a feature article about the Bad Beat Jackpot swelling to unprecedented levels at Napa Valley Casino, just outside of the Bay Area in California. Now, we can report that the jackpot has officially hit at $92,000 in a straight flush over straight flush pot. Ouch. PocketFives sat down with Napa Valley Casino Poker Room Manager Chris Henderson to talk about the legendary bad beat as well as a new Toys for Tots campaign.

PocketFives: The Napa Valley Casino Bad Beat Jackpot hit at $92,000. Who won?

Chris Henderson: The person who hit it was a regular. They were playing $4/$8 half-kill, won the hand before, and were on the kill. One person sat out and the person with the kill pot had 3-2 of spades. The board came 4s-6s-X. The turn was the 5s. The other person had 8-7 of spades for the top end of the straight flush. This happened two weeks ago on a Thursday around 5:30pm. It had gone over a year without getting hit.

The lady who won the big end of it tipped everyone really well. She even gave some money to the guy who stepped out and missed the hand. Everyone was happy and excited. They play all the time, so it’s good for the casino. By the way, the guy who stepped out was taking a smoke break and missed one hand. When he came back, $92,000 was spread out on the table.

PocketFives: Remind us how you distribute the Bad Beat Jackpot.

Chris Henderson: We do 50-25-25 for the Bad Beat Jackpot. The losing hand got about $45,000. The winning hand got about $22,000, and the rest of the table got $5,000 each. We gave out some of it in chips and the rest in the form of a check. We have to pull out money for taxes as well. I think they’ll be paying some bills and taking some time off work. We seeded the new jackpot with $50,000. It’s at $50,400 right now.

PocketFives: Tell us about your December 16th Toys for Tots poker tournament. Where did the idea for that come from?

Chris Henderson: It’s a $500 guaranteed tournament. If you bring a gift for Toys for Tots that’s unopened, you’ll get free entry. If you don’t, it’s $30 to enter. $20 goes to the prize pool and $10 goes to Toys for Tots. I wanted to hold a holiday tournament, so we decided to put it on. You can bring any toy at any time, but if you want free entry, bring it on the 16th. We have Toys for Tots bins here right now as well.

PocketFives: You’re quickly approaching the end of 2012, which means awarding your Player of the Year Championship in a tournament on January 12th. How is the field stacking up for it?

Chris Henderson: It’ll be for the top 30 players in points who qualify. The only way in is if you’re in the top 30 of the points standings in 2012. It’s going to be a pretty good-sized, deep-stack tournament to determine who is one of the best players at Napa Valley Casino. The winner gets $2,500 in cash, a paid vacation, and hotel accommodations. There will be a couple of destination choices and it’s a winner-take-all event.

The top person on our leaderboard right now has 950 points and #30 on the list has 171 points. I think you’ll need to get to at least 200 points to make the top 30. If you win a tournament, you can get a total of 31 points and, just by entering, you’ll get one point. We have three tournaments a week that qualify. When we have our deep-stack tournament, it’s worth double points. I plan to do this again in 2013. Next year, we’ll be adding a seat to a $1,500 World Series of Poker event as well.

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