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Lake Winnipesaukee Historical Society Museum
Prepares for Opening in June. New Casino Poker Events Aid Fundraising Effort

by Lorrie Baird
Contributing Editor

The Lake Winnipesaukee Historical Society is planning to open its museum to the public on Sunday, June 27.

The museum, which is currently undergoing extensive renovation work, including the installation of a handicapped access ramp, is already open on Fridays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. with Beth Lavertue, society president, greeting guests and informing them of the work already done and of future plans for the museum.

“It’s a work in progress. We still have a lot of work to do to complete the project,’’ says Lavertue, who is hoping that having the museum open will encourage potential donors to provide additional support for completion of the project.

Over the past several months the work on the museum has been taken up a few notches in preparation for the much anticipated June opening. The Historical Society purchased the property in December of 1999 and since that time has invested much time and money into bringing the property and the museum building to where it is today.

New sewer and water lines were installed, old cabins removed, trees cuts down and the parking lot paved. Inside the museum itself walls were torn down and some reinforcement work was done. A new ceiling installed, carpet put down, the kitchen remodeled, a handicapped bathroom built and a state-of the-art alarm system put in, to name a few. Each project completed as funds became available through Bingo fund-raising and donations.

“It’s been a long process,” says Beth, “but the end result was definitely worth the wait.” The historical society is also stepping up its fund-raising effort by launching Texas Hold ‘Em poker tournaments at the Funspot Bingo Hall every Thursday starting May 27.

The society is working with Art Phillips and Peter Dupont of Casino Games Rental to hold a series of tournaments culminating with a Tournament of Champions Invitational in December in which winners of the previous tournaments will compete.

Phillips says that the Greater Laconia-Weirs Beach Chamber of Commerce recently held a successful tournament at Lochmere Country Club at which 98 players participated. He said the chamber raised about $8,000 at the event. He said that the surge of interest in Texas Hold ‘Em has been created by the World Series of Poker which is held every year at Binion’s Horseshoe Casino in Las Vegas. “It’s a profitable money maker for charity organizations,” said Phillips, who along with his partner started Casino Games Rental three years ago so that they could both supplement their incomes in order to allow their daughters to compete in equestrian events. “It’s a fun job. You get to meet some great people and help them raise money. And the players love it,’’ says Phillips.

Hold’em, also known as Texas Hold’em, is a poker game in which each player receives two cards (hole cards) dealt face down, while five cards are dealt face up on the table. All players play their best five cards using any combination of their two downcards and the five common cards on the table. The best five-card poker hand among those in contention for the pot wins. The betting starts after two cards are dealt to each player in Texas Hold’em. These cards are unique to each player. The next three cards (called flop cards or, simply, the flop) are then dealt in the center of the table. These cards are community cards and are part of each active player’s hand. A second round of betting occurs. The fourth community card (the turn card) is dealt in the center of the table, followed by another (third) round of betting.

The final community card (the river card) is dealt in the center of the table, followed by a final (fourth) round of betting. The turn and river cards are also community cards used by all players in Texas Hold’em. When all bets have been equalized, the showdown takes place among the remaining players and the winner is declared. If only one player remains at the end of any round in Hold’em, there is no showdown and the pot is awarded to that lone remaining player. A player uses the best five cards among his pocket cards and the community cards to determine his hand. That is, a player may use both, one, or none of the two hole cards he started with. Check-and-raise is allowed in all in Texas Hold’em games (except on the first round, when a player, on his turn, must either bet or fold).

The top prize in the weekly tournaments will be $2,500, with second place winning $1,500, third $1,000, fourth $800, fifth $600 and sixth through 14th $250 each.

Pre-registration for the tournaments cost $100 and those entering the day of the event pay $125. That gives them $3,000 worth of chips with additional chips available at $50 for $1,500 in chips. Tournament play gets underway at 6 p.m. with open poker starting at 1 p.m. each Thursday. Open poker is available to the general public and tournament participation is not necessary. Open poker are dealer’s choice games.  The events will be catered by Hart’s Turkey Farm with bar service provided by Funspot’s D.A. Long Tavern.

For more information or to register call 366-4377.

The Lake Winnipesaukee Historical Society is a non-profit organization.