We know you’ve all been anxiously awaiting the new schedule, but before we share the returning locations, we think it’s important to acknowledge and share some information with all of you. The COVID-19 pandemic happened. It affected all of us. Some of us lost jobs, some of us lost businesses, and some of us lost loved ones. Life changed. Between masks, staying at home, not going out to dinner or the movies or to the bar to play poker, to hoping to see loved ones again soon…it was all very stressing.
Straight Flush also had some stresses. When the stay-at-home orders shut down our venues, it also shut us down. We were unable to provide services to the bars that provide the revenue for the large prizes awarded at our state tournaments. We also chose to not collect outstanding revenue from our bar partners as a gesture of good will. We wanted them to use their funds to pay their staff and try to keep their doors open in any way possible, so that we could come back and play again. It didn’t help everyone, as some bars and restaurants couldn’t whether the storm.
Unfortunately, these gestures didn’t leave us with much left in our bank account either. We are basically starting over at square-one. You’ll notice quickly not all of our venues have chosen to return at this time, or return at the same level, or have pursued other options with no plans to bring poker back at all.
Prior to the shut-down, we were getting ready for a state tourney. Unfortunately, that season will have to become null and void. That state tournament will not be played. This is hugely disappointing for us, but we couldn’t predict the impact the pandemic would have on our revenue stream from the bars. Closed bars with no games means no funds to pay for those prizes. Running Aces, a huge supporter and sponsor of the prizes for the state tournaments was also closed and is not able to help in their usual contributions at this time.
Players who had already won trips, etc. at the previous state tourney, for the June 2020 WSOP will receive compensation in lieu of the trip. This was most important to us to make happen. We have four great venues starting again next week, June 21st-24th. They will be offering the nightly prizes as usual, however no player points will be given at this time. Monday’s at American Legion Post 580 at 7p in Chanhassen, Tuesday’s at Jersey’s Bar & Grill at 7p in Inver Grove Heights, Wednesday’s at Park Place Sports Bar at 7p in St. Paul Park, and Wednesday’s at Mad Jacks Sports Cafe at 7p in Brooklyn Park.
We need to have a few more bars up and running to be able to offer the same quality of prizes we have in the past. If our math is correct, look for the league and points to start up again in October…playing for a trip to WSOP 2022…In order for that to happen, we have to show these bars again how much we support them. Bring new players, meet early for dinner or drinks, support the location while playing poker. (READ: SPEND MONEY IN THE LOCATIONS.) Be respectful of their tireless and overworked staff! TIP YOUR SERVERS.
Remember, Straight Flush poker is NOT FREE POKER. Our venues are paying to host these weekly tournaments and if they don’t see a return on their investment, there is no incentive for them to keep hosting.
In the meantime, we are working on some specialty tourneys with bigger prizes to fill the gaps in the schedule. Let us know if you have any ideas for those. Let us know if you are interested in being a TD or have a new venue that may want to try poker with us.Most of all, thanks for being patient with us and the bars while we get Straight Flush rolling again…we’re coming back and hopefully, we will be back just as strong as ever very soon.