How does ACES award $ for free poker?
ACES League, like a pool league, band, or a DJ
brings customers to the bar, so the bar pays the league a fee every night, depending on the size of the game.
Unfortunately, if games get cancelled, no money gets collected and the prize pool goes down, so please support your bars and show up but just don't loiter in the bar or at the Poker Table.
So, it's free to play cards, but not hang out in the host establishment/bar
and not spend a dime.
How is this legal?
According to Virginia Law, Gambling is illegal.
“Illegal gambling” is defined in Section 18.2-325 of the
Code as “the making, placing or receipt of any bet or wager in this Commonwealth
of money or other thing of value, made in exchange for a chance to win a prize,
stake or other consideration or thing of value, dependent upon the result of any
game, contest or any other event the outcome of which is uncertain or a matter
of chance, whether such game, contest or event, occurs or is to occur inside or
outside the limits of this Commonwealth.”
For it to be unlawful, there must be all 3 things:
A Game of Chance
Paying to Play (consideration)
Awarding winnings (a prize)
Now, while some may think that Poker is a game of skill and NOT a game of chance, that's how the state sees it.
The Portsmouth Poker halls got away with it in the past,
because some in the city government believed it was a game of skill.
So, to break the link of 3, we don't pay to play.
There's no buy-in, no cover charge, no requirement to pay money to play cards.
Nowever, the bar has the right to require 'customers' to spend a little money or be asked to leave.