There’s no time of year quite like the summer for Las Vegas poker players. With the World Series of Poker in full throttle, tons of real and wannabe pro card players are in town to show off their skills with the hopes of taking down a big score.The focus is naturally at the Rio on the WSOP , where 57 bracelets will be bestowed. But that doesn’t mean there won’t be some serious cash won elsewhere. A number of Las Vegas casinos are preparing for their summer poker series, which they will host in conjunction with the WSOP in order to give poker players a more affordable way to play in a major event.Card Player has broken down the major tournament series in town, along with the median buy-in of their events.Aria Classic June 27-July 17 Median Buy-in: $335The newest poker series in town will kick off June 27, welcoming locals and tourists alike into its newly celebrated room with an 11-event poker series. While its featured high-stakes area, the Ivey Room, will now host some of the high-rollers in town, the inaugural Aria Classic will cater to those with a more modest bankroll. Its $1,590 main event will feature three starting days — July 11, 12, and 13.Bellagio Cup VI June 25-July 16 Median Buy-in: $1,080Although most events may not be for the low-stakes casual player, few venues do tournament series as well as Bellagio does. The luxurious casino will host the Bellagio Cup next month, highlighted by its $10,000 main event — one of the featured events on the World Poker Tour . There are 23 tournaments in all, including a number of mixed games formats.Binion’s Classic May 26-July 11 Median Buy-in: $200 Main Event StructureWith the Binion’s newly renovated poker room, there aren’t many classier places to play cards in downtown (if not all of the city). The legends are framed on the wall of the former home of the WSOP , almost daring you to join them. This 46-event series boasts mostly $150 and $200 events with a $1,000 main event on June 30.Caesars Palace Mega Stack Series May 26-July 15 Median Buy-in: $330 Main Event StructurePossibly the nicest Harrah’s property on the Strip, Caesars Palace will be home to the casino company’s second major poker series of the summer. The Mega Stack Series will host mostly $330 events, with a number of $225 and $550 tourneys thrown in. The main event, with two starting days on July 11 and 12, will feature a $1,060 buy-in.Grand Poker Series June 5-July 4 Median Buy-in: $225 Main Event StructureThe Golden Nugget will host a 51-event series full of mixed games, as well as no-limit hold’em action — all at a very affordable price. With more than 60 tables, the casino will be able to host large fields for its small events. Tourneys on the schedule run as low as $125. Poker players will love the structure of the Grand Finale , with 20,000 in starting chips and 60 minute levels. That event, with a buy-in of $550, starts June 18.Venetian Deep Stack Extravaganza III May 28-July 15 Median Buy-in: $340It’s no surprise that one of the most popular poker rooms in Las Vegas also holds one of the most popular tournament series. A great alternative for players looking to spend a little bit less in buy-ins than the WSOP with more starting chips, the Venetian’s flagship tournament series will offer 51 events, spread out over a variety of price points. The $5,000 main event, with 25,000 in chips and 90-minute levels, will begin July 12.
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