Former major league ballplayer Jeff Conine, left, with event co-chair Greg Marsh; Fortson Photography.

 

The Jeff Conine Celebrity Poker Classic is a night of fun and philanthropy, with an opportunity for attendees to take home more than $30,000 in cash and prizes. Best of all, it will improve the lives of children and families coping with serious medical issues.

The 7th annual fundraiser – to be held Thursday, August 9,  at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino – benefits the Conine Clubhouse, a home-away-from-home where families of children under care at Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital can stay for free. Hosted by former major league baseball player Jeff Conine and presented by Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino and the Charity Series of Poker, the event will feature celebrities playing alongside players of all skill levels for a first prize valued at more than $10,000. Other prizes include vacation and hotel packages and cash totaling more than $20,000. Live and silent auction entertainment and dining experiences, vacation packages, and unique sports items will also be part of the action.

Taking place at the new Terrace Ballroom at Hard Rock Event Center, the fun begins at 5:30 p.m. with a cocktail reception prior to the tournament’s start at 7:00 p.m. Guests will enjoy drinks, hors d’ oeuvres, music, and, when the poker starts, a chance to win more cash and prizes, including a $5,250 seat in the SHRPO $3 Million Guarantee Championship. There will also be two $1,000 bonus payouts, the first going to the chip leader when registration closes and the second to the player who has the most re-entries.

A $300 donation to the Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital Foundation reserves a seat for poker and entry to the cocktail reception. Those not playing poker can purchase admission to the reception for $100. Proceeds benefit the Conine Clubhouse, which has provided free lodging to more than 9,000 families that have had a child hospitalized at Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital. The 2017 Conine Poker event raised nearly $145,000 to underwrite expenses at the hotel-like facility.

“Cindy and I stayed at the clubhouse when our son was younger and know firsthand the importance of being close to the hospital,” said Conine. “It provides all the amenities of a hotel but, more importantly, gives families a temporary place to call home when they need it most.”

The Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino is located at 1 Seminole Way in Hollywood.

“One of the hardest things for a parent is watching their child suffer and having to leave them alone for even the briefest of moments,” said Susan Renneisen, vice president of community affairs and special events for Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino. “The Conine Clubhouse is an established and integral part of our community, allowing families the opportunity to stay close to their loved ones in a beautiful and relaxing facility during a difficult time. Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino and Charity Series of Poker is honored to support the Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital Foundation’s fundraising efforts through the Jeff Conine Celebrity Poker Classic.”

Player participation for poker is limited, with registration taking place at CONINEPOKERCLASSIC.ORG or at the event itself. Event sponsorship, which includes seats in the poker tournament and admission to the cocktail reception, is also available on the website. For more information, contact Craig Cohen at CrCohen@MHS.net or 954-265-7241.