Poker in Virginia

Poker in Virginia

As the state with the second-highest number of US presidents-to-be, Virginia was also one of the last one to legalize casinos on its soil. However, this doesn’t mean goodbye to poker in Virginia. This year, the state legislature gave the green light to casino construction in five different cities. Bristol, Danville, Portsmouth, and Norfolk are the other five cities in question. One year after the other four, Richmond, the capital, finished the legal process, and bets on sporting events became legal after the State Assembly passed the new law.

poker in virginia

Virginia does not yet have any casinos open to the public. Nonetheless, the five cities have proposed a number of significant initiatives. Presently, it appears that Rivers Casino in Portsmouth will be the first to launch. The opening is planned for sometime in 2022 or 2023. The Rivers Casino brand currently encompasses three thriving gambling establishments in the United States. Three in total; two in Pennsylvania (Pittsburgh and Philadelphia) and one in Illinois (Del Plaines). Rush Street Gaming, owned by casino tycoon Neil Bluhm, is responsible for their operation.

Prior to the 2019 state legislation, Virginians might well have obtained their own casino on Native American reservations thanks to the federal Indian Gaming Act, which was passed in 1988. Virginia is one of the few states without a single Native American casino.

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Local gamblers currently have to cross into neighboring states like Maryland or West Virginia to get their fix until the new establishments open. A few horse racing facilities can be found in Virginia; some of these facilities also offer slot machines. Even a state lottery exists there. But as of right now, there is no actual poker room where you can play in regular tournaments and cash games.

Quick Summary

  • Number of Residents: 8,536,000
  • Richmond is the capital of Virginia.
  • Money in U.S. dollars ($)
  • The UTC-5 time zone.
  • Virginia Abbreviation is VA.

Where You Can Play Poker in Indiana Casinos:

  • Horseshoe Danville
  • Richmond Resort Casino
  • Rivers Casino Portsmouth

Poker Stars From The Commonwealth Of Virginia

Born in the small Virginia town of Oakton, Justin Bonomo has made the world his home. Between July 2018 and August 2019, he was atop the prestigious Hendon all-time money list. In the end, Brynn Kenney overtook him.

For the record, Bonomo has amassed $55.153 million from live tournaments. That’s still the second-highest total ever recorded, and clearly the highest ever in Virginia. His three World Series of Poker gold bracelets are an impressive feat. During the 2018 World Series of Poker, in July, he won $10 million playing in the Big One for One Drop high roller tournament with a $1 million buy-in. That is the most money he has ever won in a single live tournament.

John Gabe Patgorski, an American from Chesapeake, Virginia, comes in at number two. His total winnings from live tournaments total $7.833 million. He is a regular competitor in Triton’s ultra-high-stakes tournaments held all over the world. His win at the £250,000 Short Deck NLHE “Les Ambassadeurs Private Event” at Trition London in August 2019 earned him £4.815 million. He won a head-to-head match against another Virginian, Justin Bonomo, and ultimately defeated Bonomo to claim victory.

Live Poker in the Old Dominion

Online Poker Legislation in Virginia

The 2019 Gambling bill, which authorized casinos in 5 cities and sports betting, has already been mentioned. To be more precise, it is Senate Bill 1126, which was approved by the State House with a vote of 64-33 and by the Senate with a vote of 30-10.

Before the 2019 law, the only legal forms of gambling in the state were horse race betting, bingo, fantasy sports, and the state lottery. Virginia law lays out stiff fines and jail time for those caught engaging in unlawful gambling in Section 18.2-326.

Those interested in obtaining a gambling license in Virginia must do so with the Commonwealth’s Treasurer. In a welcoming gesture, the application fee is a reasonable $200. The Virginia Lottery is in charge of controlling all physical casinos in the state.

Locations in Virginia to Play Live Poker

According to our introduction, there are presently no locations in Virginia hosting poker tournaments or cash games. This is because legalized casino gambling is a relatively recent development. We can only provide you with a small sample of the many casinos in the works at this time.

The Rivers Casino in Portsmouth is the frontrunner to be the first to open, and we discussed it in an earlier article. We can expect a large poker room with a wide variety of games based on our experience at other Rivers-branded casinos in the United States.

Virginia state in Google maps

Several plans have been proposed for Richmond, Virginia, the state capital. Bally’s offer has been turned down so far. Yet, Winds Creek is still in the running, and the Richmond Resort Casino from the Pamunkey Indian Tribe is scheduled to debut in 2022 or 2023.

Horseshoe Danville is a planned casino and resort in the city of Danville, Indiana, developed by Caesars Entertainment. Caesars, the largest WSOP sponsor, is likely to give poker a prominent role in their newest venue.

Gambling Halls and Poker Casinos in the Old Dominion State

The Case for Legalizing Online Poker in the Commonwealth of Virginia

Virginia shares the predicament of the majority of the United States’s other states. They haven’t enacted any laws that deal specifically with online gambling. That’s why they can’t offer a regulated version of the online gambling industry.

As a result, it is illegal to use the internet to access any type of gambling site, including online poker rooms. Where state law does not permit it, online gambling is prohibited by federal law thanks to the 1961 Wire Act and the 2006 Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act. We saw their disastrous effects on Black Friday of 2011.

There are, therefore, two options available to residents of Virginia who are interested in playing poker online. They either use a site like America’s Cardroom, which is hosted in an unregulated offshore jurisdiction, or they use a social poker app that operates on the sweepstakes model, like Ignition Poker.

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