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Best of Rudi Schiffer

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Mississippi poker room manager makes the rules her way

1 February 2012

When you walk into the poker room at Gold Strike Casino Resort, tucked away by the dual escalators on the second floor, you may only see one lady there in the male dominated setting but with her spiked short cut blonde hair and an imposing figure of authority, you will know at once this is HER room.

She has made it so. Since she took over the position as manager of poker room, Karen Kaegin, a 14-year-veteran of poker rooms, who is also an accomplished player in her own right, has transformed it with her own touches. No, she did not put in flowers pots and drapes, but she brought in more games, more tournaments and more things that players like herself like and want.

One player we talked to had this to say…”I’ve been playing here a long time and it has been a good place to play or obviously I wouldn’t keep coming back, but Karen and her outgoing personality has brought a new life to the room and players like it. She really knows what we like and her experience puts it all together.”

“We brought in more attractive games and changed some to make them so. We have more promotions going on all the time and enough larger events to attract world class players,” said Kaegin, a native of Kentucky where she still keeps horses.

One change she likes to hustle is that she lowered the bad beat making it smaller so there were more opportunities to win. Instead of four of a king to qualify she made Aces full of Kings as the qualifying hand. That made the pots smaller but more reachable.

She implemented other touches like the Lucky Seat with $50.00 each half hour from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m, and promotions like Aces Cracked, a Texas Hold ‘em spin off, and Omaha High-Low High Hand with $100.00 every half hour On Feb.17 she will run for a second time an event that had a solid turnout the first time it ran, the Beat The Boss tournament. For $40 entry, players can show their stuff against Gold Strike execs who have bounties placed on them. Knock ‘em out and you collect from the bounty pool of $2,500.

Bigger upcoming events include the $15,000 Texas No Limit tournament on Feb. 4 with a $150.00 buy-in. Kaegin said she expects 150 entries for the event. And then there’s the Delta Gold Classic March 23-April 2 that will feature 19 numbered events. Registration opens at 9 a.m. on March 23.

Kaegin learned her poker at home with her husband Joe and both sets of parents who were avid card players and played at least 4 times a week around kitchen tables. She said it was fun but there were lots of arguments. When she plays now she likes limit games such as 10-/20 with a full kill. Her icon is pro Daniel Negrenue.

She encourages females to learn the game and the trend has been that way as more and more ladies like the high dollar events and the chance to compete against guys, even if they overbearing sometimes. “Women have changed the face of poker, once seen as amateurs at all levels, now they are noticed for their play, not their gender.”

Running a room: “In the end it all boils down to knowing what the players want and great guest service,” she concluded.

The room is non-smoking and has 17 tables with special poker overnight room rates for the asking for qualified players. For reservations call 888-245-7829 and for tournament information call 662-357-1135.
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Best of Rudi Schiffer
Rudi Schiffer

Rudi Schiffer is a long time columnist and contributing writer for Jackpot Magazine, the South’s leading gaming publication, and for casinocitytimes.com, the world’s leading casino industry internet news distributor. He is also owner and co-host of the 20-year-old Goodtimes Radio Show, now simulcast on Fridays from 3-6 PM Central Time from Country Classic 1180 AM, Memphis networked with KMIS 1050 AM, and 103.9 KGLU FM from Kennet, MO covering parts of Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee and Mississippi. His radio show is also archived at audiovegas.com. A Boston University Journalism graduate, he resides in Memphis, TN. Known as the "Voice of Tunica" for his support the gaming jurisdiction for two decades, he was also recently named to Memphis Business Quarterly Magazine’s 3rd annual “The Power Players, Who’s Who” of Memphis.He is also a contributing writer for Southern Gaming & Entertainment and Mississippi Gaming.

Rudi Schiffer Websites:

www.AudioVegas.com
Rudi Schiffer
Rudi Schiffer is a long time columnist and contributing writer for Jackpot Magazine, the South’s leading gaming publication, and for casinocitytimes.com, the world’s leading casino industry internet news distributor. He is also owner and co-host of the 20-year-old Goodtimes Radio Show, now simulcast on Fridays from 3-6 PM Central Time from Country Classic 1180 AM, Memphis networked with KMIS 1050 AM, and 103.9 KGLU FM from Kennet, MO covering parts of Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee and Mississippi. His radio show is also archived at audiovegas.com. A Boston University Journalism graduate, he resides in Memphis, TN. Known as the "Voice of Tunica" for his support the gaming jurisdiction for two decades, he was also recently named to Memphis Business Quarterly Magazine’s 3rd annual “The Power Players, Who’s Who” of Memphis.He is also a contributing writer for Southern Gaming & Entertainment and Mississippi Gaming.

Rudi Schiffer Websites:

www.AudioVegas.com