Poker Tournaments in California in 2024 – CA Poker Tournaments Schedule & ResultsLas Vegas is the biggest epicenter for gambling in the world.
It is a place all gamblers hope to visit at least once in their lifetime and experience the glamour and glitz of its ever-evolving landscape.
But there are several places in the US that can match the excitement of Sin City, and California is certainly one of them.
If you’re searching for the ultimate guide to poker tournaments in California, you’re on the right page.
In this article, we’ll cover all you need to know about ongoing tournaments in the Golden State and help you get started. Read on.
Poker Tournaments in California
Even though California has had a mixed relationship with poker, it’s a country where poker players can find a range of poker tournaments. Are they legal? They are part of land-based cardrooms that found a way to circumvent the rules and offer the popular card game. On top of that, California is home to many legal tribal brick-and-mortar casinos where you can legally take part in poker tournaments.
Online Poker Tournaments in California
Online poker is illegal in California, but players are still free to choose from a couple of options. Namely, they can join a sweepstakes platform or opt for an offshore-licensed poker site. These sites usually feature plenty of tournaments, most focusing on Texas Hold’em. However, you’ll also find many Omaha, Stud, and other options.
You have to be extremely careful when choosing a poker site, as some of them might be scams. Therefore, we recommend sticking to the list proposed in this article as it was selected and tested by a team of professional poker players and industry connoisseurs.
Land-Based Poker Tournaments in California
Whether you’re a beginner or professional poker player, you’re bound to find a range of poker tournaments in CA. Many tribal casinos feature ongoing tourneys daily, weekly, or monthly.
Moreover, some casinos host big tournaments, with the most famous example being the World Series of Poker Circuit: Thunder Valley.
Other great land-based CA poker tournaments are the Los Angeles Poker Classic, WPT: Legends of Poker Main Event and The Commerce Hold’em Series.
How to Register for an Online Poker Tournament
Registering for an online poker tournament in California is not a complex process. To do that, you first need to register on a poker platform of your choice. Let’s look at a step-by-step guide on how to do that.
Choose A Poker Site
Pick one of the platforms suggested in this article to start your online poker California journey.
Find the registration button and fill out the form — The form might be slightly different for every site, but you’ll essentially have to provide your username, password, email, and other details about you.
(Optional) Download the poker software — Some poker sites are browser-based, and others require you to download and install an app. Sometimes, both are possible, and it all depends on the type of poker platform you choose.
Deposit & Play
Make a deposit — To buy a poker ticket for a tournament, you need to fund your account. This is possible by connecting a payment option accepted on the poker site of your choice.
Claim a welcome bonus — Some online poker sites feature a bonus for new players that you can claim upon your first deposit, so make sure to read more about it and claim it to kickstart your experience.
California Land-Based Casinos With Poker Tournaments
When it comes to California, it’s not fair to limit the selection of land-based poker options only to casinos, as there are dozens of cardrooms scattered all over the state that offer pretty great poker experiences. However, it’s challenging to compare cardrooms and poker rooms in tribal casinos, especially because there are so many cardrooms out there. Because of that, we decided to stick to traditional poker rooms in case you plan to visit one of the casinos in the state.
Therefore, the most popular brick-and-mortar poker rooms in casinos in CA are:
- Thunder Valley Casino Resort
- The Bicycle Hotel & Casino (also known as the Bike)
- Commerce Casino
- Hustler Casino
- Hollywood Park Casino
California Poker Tournament Schedule
Every year, the WSOP circuit passes through the Golden State, bringing in some of the most elite poker players in the world. The WSOP showcases poker’s biggest superstars fighting for supremacy, millions of dollars, and the legendary bracelet.
The World Series of Poker is the largest poker event in the world, reserved for highest-echelon players only. To come out as the winner in such a competition, one must possess tremendous skill and dedication. To become the master of your craft, you’ll need to find a safe haven — a place where you can sharpen your poker skills. On that note, we recommend that you check out our list of the best real-money Californian poker sites if you want to take your poker skills to another level.
The WSOP is not the only top-tier poker event in California. There are several tournaments and high-stakes games being hosted across the Golden State daily, boasting massive prize pools and fierce competition.
If you’re interested in the upcoming poker tournaments in the Golden State for 2024, please refer to the schedule below. You’ll be able to find the latest updates about upcoming and ongoing contests. Hopefully, you’ll be able to find the proper competition for you and start playing poker with other people who enjoy the popular card game.
- Los Angeles Poker Classic (January 15- March 4)
- WSOP Circuit: Thunder Valley (January 9 – 20)
- WPT: Legends of Poker Main Event (Aug 31 – Sep 04)
- The Commerce Hold’em Series (Sep 4 – Sep 20)
Los Angeles Poker Classic
January 15- March 4 at the Commerce Casino
The LA Poker Classic has a long tradition among the LA poker community. This first-class event features 50 straight days of poker action, lasting from Jan 4-March 4, with over 67 tournaments and hundreds of games throughout, including events such as Triple Stud, Pot Limit Omaha, and NL Survivor.
In 2018, LAPC celebrated its 25th anniversary. This year’s edition also featured four different Player of the Series promotions, with the host adding over $50,000 to the awarded players.
The LAPC series wrapped up with the $10K WPT Main Event Championship, where the winner takes home a hefty prize of over $1 million. The Final Table of the remaining top six players went underway in HyperX Esports Arena in Las Vegas on April 2, 2020. The culmination of the LAPC event was broadcasted and live-streamed via PokerGO.
The applicants could register for the LAPC until the start of level 11 when around 100 contenders are still in the game.
The event is traditionally held at the Commerce Casino, located in the LA suburb of commerce. This elite poker establishment boasts over 240 tables, making it the largest cardroom in the world. Commerce casino is home to several top-tier poker events, including Cal State Poker Championship, LA Poker Open, Hold’em Series and LA Poker Classic.
Some of the most notable events to look out for at the LA Poker Classic are:
- LAPC Kickoff Event — $175,000 guaranteed
- No Limit LAPC — $202,020 guaranteed
- The Great Wall of Chips — $288,888 guaranteed
- LAPC Million — $1M guaranteed
The buy-ins in this tournament range from $150 (No-Limit Hold’em — $50k guaranteed) to $1,100 (LAPC Million — $1M guaranteed).
WSOP Circuit: Thunder Valley (Sacramento)
January 9-20 at the Thunder Valley Casino Resort
Every year, the World Series of Poker circuit makes its stop at the Thunder Valley Casino Resort in Lincoln, CA. The 2020 event wrapped with the conclusion of the $1,700 Main Event — a tournament that attracted 487 players and boasted a prize pool of over $737,000. This was an increase since the 2019 event had a total of 464 participants.
The 42-year-old mathematician Jaime Haletky came out on top of the $1,700 buy-in no-limit hold’em main event, thus securing his maiden WSOPC gold ring and the grand prize of $147,706. He also won a seat into the 2020 Global Casino Championship by raking in 720 POY points.
The WSOP Thunder Valley kicked off with the No-Limit Hold’em (The Opener) event and lasted between 9-12 Jan. The buy-in was $400, and the 1319 participants battled out for a prize pool of $300,000.
In total, WSOP Thunder Valley features 14 different events. During the two-week-long poker action, rollers can try out their skill in three poker varieties — No-Limit Hold’em, Omaha Hi-Lo, and H.O.R.S.E. The buy-ins start at $250 (No Limit Hold-em — Seniors, event 11), and go all the way up to $3,250 (No-Limit Hold’em — High Roller, event 10).
The 2020 winner Haletky came into the final day of action as the chip leader ($4,030,000), while the five-time WSOPC winner Scott Stewart was next in the line with a $3,105,000 stack. Bryan Piccolli was the first to get eliminated from the event, after only a half an hour of play.
Steward got railed by Haletky, after a three-handed action, and finished the event in 4th place. In the grand finals, Haletky beat the runner-up Adedapo Ajayi with a pair of threes. The win at WSOP Thunder Valley was the largest score of Haletky’s career, with the next biggest two paydays also having taken place at the same event.
WPT: Legends of Poker Main Event
Aug 31 – Sep 04 at the Bicycle Casino, Bell Gardens, CA
The World Poker Tour is an esteemed gaming and entertainment brand that hosts a series of international tournaments, boasting massive prize pools, and gathering poker aficionados from across the globe. In 2020, the tournament is going to celebrate its 19th anniversary.
One of the most sought-after competitions organized by the WPT is the Legends of Poker Main The event takes place annually at the prestigious Bicycle Hotel & Casino in Bell Gardens, CA. This massive establishment hosts a number of American and Asian poker variants and world-renowned tournaments.
The Legends of Poker event attracts poker enthusiasts of all skill levels — from recreational to pro players. The participants compete for a jaw-dropping prize pool of over $2,400,000. Every year, the field of entry gets bigger with last year’s edition having featured 520 entrants.
The buy-ins for the LoP range from $160 to $5,000 for the No-Limit Hold’em $2 million, which is the main event. The registration period lasts for the two starting days (Aug 31 and Sep 1), and registration after day two is not allowed. The registration events take place at noon on both starting days.
The buy-in is set at $5,000, and the applicants are allowed a single re-entry during the day. The players start with 40,000 chips with the initial blinds hovering between 100-100 for the first level. Day 1 and 2 feature an hour-long blind level, which increases to a 90-min level on day 3.
Overall, the Legends of Poker event has brought in some of the most respected champions with the likes of Dan Harrington (2007), John Phan (2008), Prahlad Friedman (2009) and Andy Frankenberger (2010).
The Commerce Hold’em Series
Sep 4 – Sep 20
The lavish Commerce Hotel & Casino is home to numerous world-class poker events, one of which is the Commerce Hold’em Series. In 2020, the tournament is scheduled to run from 4th to 20th September. There are over 13 different events in the series, with most of them being daily. The buy-ins and prize pools vary between different events.
The Commerce Hold’em series kicks off with the Abyss tournament. This a $360 buy-in No-Limit Hold’em event with a $250,000 guarantee. This competition features an 8-hour level of 100 big blinds on day one, and 2 hour-level of 100 big blinds on day two. Applicants can usually register at any point around noon in the opening two days.
The $1,100 buy-in No-Limit Hold’em steals the spotlight with $1 million prize cash guaranteed. It’s played across 7 days and boasts a field of over 1100 entrants. The blinds start at 100-200 at level 1 and go all the way up to 6,000-12,000 at level 19. Players from any position are eligible to win the entire ante, regardless of the chip stack.
The winner of the Commerce Hold’em series 2019 was David Tuthill, who claimed his victory in a four-way chop, taking home $150,000 as well as $10,000 seat into the 2020 La Poker Classic Main Event.
Best Poker Rooms To Play Online Tournaments In CaliforniaThe most populous US state is swarmed with elite poker rooms. Some of the most well-regarded include Bicycle Casino, Commerce Casino, and Hollywood Park Casino. Other than these, there are a number of high-stakes independent poker venues and card rooms spread all across the area.
My list of the best US poker sites which I consider to be the best rooms to play in 2024:
- BetOnline Poker
- Ignition Poker
- Everygame Poker
- Juicy Stakes Poker
- ACR Poker
- Bovada Poker
- BlackChip Poker
- SportsBetting Poker
100% Legal & Licensed Verified Bonus Mobile Friendly Advertiser Disclosure. Must be +18 to participate.
California hasn’t yet launched state-regulated online poker rooms, although major gambling companies and activists are constantly trying to push for legislation. The Golden State’s land-based gambling operations pay over $500 million to Californian players every year, which only shows how popular gambling is in the area.
As soon as the politicians realize the potential online gambling could bring to the economy, they’re surely going to legalize this widely popular pastime.
To sum up, California might not have favorable laws for poker, but that’s just because it still hasn’t updated some century-old bills. Despite most options being in a legal gray area, you can still enjoy high-quality poker tournaments on both real and virtual felt.
There are dozens of cardrooms in the state, as many online poker sites offer their services to Californians.
Can I play poker tournaments online in California?
Are live poker tournaments available in California?
Are poker tournaments legal in California?
What is the best online poker site in California?
It’s difficult to name just a single poker site, but feel free to explore the list on this page, as it consists of the highest-ranking online options that Californians have at the moment.