Poker Room celebrates 10 years

What began as “The Biggest Little Card Room in California” with merely four tables and nine employees is now celebrating its 10 Year Anniversary as a premier gaming destination in the Central Valley.

When Turlock Poker Room & Casino’s co-owners Joe Fernandez and Philip Rheinschild opened the doors in June of 2004 in a 2,000 square foot building, they were confident that what most outsiders would have called a hole in the wall would in time develop into a premier gaming destination. A reputation was quickly established as a place where beginners, intermediates and professionals would feel welcome and comfortable small-town feel with big-time action.

“Over the past decade the Turlock Poker Room & Casino has earned a reputation that compares to the top gaming destinations throughout California and Nevada,” said Mario Alvarez, director of casino relations. “The owners’ progressive vision, hands-on approach, and commitment to community have been the catalysts of our growth and success.”

To mark this special occasion with an exclamation point, TPR is holding a 10 Year Anniversary Series of tournaments from Oct. 3 to 12. The big finale will be the Main Event Oct. 10 to 12 with a buy-in of $1,100.

Mega satellites with $125 buy-ins are being held each Sunday, including one on Saturday, Oct. 4. (There are several other ways to get a Main Event seat—go to or call 209-668-1010 for more information.)

In a recent interview Rheinschild said, “We feel honored and privileged that not only is Turlock Poker Room & Casino recognized as Central California’s premier gaming destination, but equally as important, a contributor to the employment of 120-plus employees and a major factor to the growth of Turlock’s economy.”

Fernandez echoed this sentiment adding, “I’m most proud of being able to give employment to our 120-plus employees. Knowing I’m contributing financially to them and their families; that’s a great feeling.”

Since opening, Turlock Poker Room & Casino has had a direct economic impact of over $50 million, has supported many charities and community organizations, and has contributed nearly $250,000 in sponsorships and donations over the past 10 years.

Turlock Poker Room & Casino is also the major sponsor of the only professional sports team in Turlock, The Turlock Express of the Major Arena Soccer League, and has recently committed to another year of sponsorship.

Some highlights from the past 10 years include:


      • January 2005. Just as Chris Moneymaker won his seat to the 2003 WSOP via satellite, so Turlock Poker Room & Casino established opportunities for their patrons to play at the WSOP Main Event. Nine patrons won satellites and played at the WSOP Main Event. That same year, six ladies also earned seats at the WSOP Ladies Event. With over $75,000 in cashes, TPR’s earliest representatives proved to be skilled players.
      • February 2006. Turlock Poker Room & Casino expands, offering additional tables and begins to offer California-style blackjack and Pai-Gow. Success continues for Turlock Poker Room & Casino sponsored players as they rake in over $176,000 in tournament play.
      • June 2008. Ownership announces that they have outgrown their current location and have an opportunity to move to a larger location, allowing for the continued growth customers demand. This growth included an even wider offering of table games, now including Three Card Poker. Moving close to Regal Stadium 14 and Highway 99 would triple the size of the former location. Business owners adjacent to what would be the new location of Turlock Poker Room & Casino expressed their
        excitement, knowing the move would bring more business to the complex.
      • June 2009. Turlock Poker Room & Casino opens its new location with 90 employees. Customers are eager to play at TPR’s new location, packing the house. After awarding an $89,000 Bad Beat Jackpot only three months earlier, TPR awards  another big Bad Beat Jackpot the very first month at the new location for $101,000.
      • October 2010. TPR awards another $100,000 Bad Beat Jackpot to lucky winners.
      • May 2011. Turlock Poker Room & Casino provides patrons the opportunity to participate in the premiere poker training event—DeepStacks Live Power Poker Course—led by Mike “The Mouth” Matusow, Chris Torina, Tristan “Cre8tive” Wade, and Katrina Jett. Later that month, more players are the lucky recipients of yet another $100,000 Bad Beat Jackpot.
      • November 2011. TPR-sponsored player Martin Staszko wins $5,433,086 as runner-up at the 2011 WSOP Main Event.
      • January 2012. Turlock Poker Room & Casino continues to expand its offering of California-style games to include Ultimate Texas Hold’em and Baccarat.
      • December 2012. Turlock Poker Room & Casino names DeepStacks Pro and two-time WSOP Players Champion Michael “The Grinder” Mizrachi as its official poker ambassador. The partnership calls for Mizrachi to make scheduled appearances at TPR to host live tournaments and cash games as well as represent the Poker Room at all major live events.
      • May 2013. Patrons joined Mizrachi for the DeepStacks Poker Tour’s $40,000 Guarantee Central CA Summer Poker Classic.
      • May 2014. Turlock Poker Room & Casino and WPT/DeepStacks sign a three-year Exclusive Deal that establishes annual WPT/DeepStacks events every May.
      •  In 2014 590 entries into the first WPT/Deepstacks Series generates 152 entries into TPR’s first ever $1,100 buy-in main event, creating an unprecedented $138,000 prize pool.


Turlock Poker Room & Casino continues to grow, while staying true to its roots. Today, TPR offers a variety of live action poker games including limit and no-limit Texas Hold’em, Omaha, and Mexican Poker. TPR still offers affordable Texas Hold’em tournaments twice daily at 10:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. and is proud to host many of the same players and employees as they did on day one, 10 years ago.