PCAP's 'Betting on a Better Future' Casino Night
Club Tamarack in Bent Tree ~ April 16, 2016

PCAP Casino Night is a Winner
by Dennis Santcucci

The energetic and exciting spirit of Casino Royale was rekindled at the Tamarack Club in Bent Tree on April 16th as Prevent Child Abuse Pickens (PCAP) held its Spring fundraiser. The theme of ‘Betting on a Better Future’ nicely reflected PCAP’s mission to prevent child abuse before it starts and to prepare children for a better life.

Over 125 patrons received $1,000 in chips to gamble the night away and they did that with unprecedented enthusiasm. Eight gaming tables including blackjack, Texas holdem’, craps and roulette were packed throughout the night emitting cheers and shouts of joy whenever a winning hand was played. The dealers from White Tie Events, led by Clay, were extremely friendly and helpful. Even the novice players felt comfortable to ‘let it ride’.

The surprise of the evening was the Bingo game hosted by Len Hill and Connie Stevens. Initially set up for 24 players, there were times when there was standing room only in the Fireside Lounge to play the game which in some cases paid out $2,000 in chips. Tim Brazeau, event chairman, commented, “We knew we had a few bingo enthusiasts coming but its popularity surprised us. To say they were enthusiastic would be a huge understatement. Raucous hilarity would be a better description.”

Chef Peter and Lindsey Brandes of the 19th hole served up copious quantities of delicious delicacies to sustain the gamers throughout the evening- Monte Cristo sandwich, Arancini with marinara sauce, Boursin stuffed dates toasted almonds, Thai Chicken Satay with peanut sauce,Smoked Brisket Sliders and ShrimpNGrits Cakes. They even topped it off with a very popular Cherries Jubilee. Besides wine and beer, there were two specialty drinks – the Queen of Hearts (a smooth vodka concoction) and the King of Diamonds (a stiff bourbon sour). For the real gaming enthusiasts Lizzy Lohman, the evening’s ‘Bond Girl’, cruised the tables serving drinks to those too wrapped up or too superstitious to interrupt their winning streaks.

“PCAP really knows how to throw a party!” patron Carol Mastroianni exclaimed “An exciting, fun evening. The food was very good, there were lots of opportunities to win raffle prizes, and the cause is so worthwhile. We were glad to be a part of this event.”

At the end of the evening patrons cashed in their chips for raffle tickets and distributed them among the 24 gift packages donated by local merchants. One lucky patron starting with $1,000 in chips ended with over $5,000 in chips, a good night by anyone’s standards. Win or lose at the tables, everyone got to participate in the final drawing for the evening, the Grand Prize, two tickets to PCAP’s famed Long Table to be held in the Fall. The lucky winner was Jackie Elwarner.

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