How Does A Casino Party Work?
Because guests aren't playing with real money, you might ask yourself, "How does this whole thing work?" Here's what happens in a nutshell. First, as your guests enter the party, our staff hands out the same amount of play money to everyone. Our "funny money" is in denominations of $500 bills, and we usually distribute two bills, or $1,000 total, to everyone in attendance.
All our events in the southeast are priced for three hours of gambling time. If you would like a longer party that is also available for an additional fee. Our crew will come early to setup your casino party (standard delivery and setup time is one hour ahead of your casino start time), and our dealers will show up 30 minutes prior to the casino party start time. By the time your guests arrive your casino will be ready for action. The dealing portion of the night will last 3 hours with a 10 to 15-minute break for the dealers somewhere in the middle of the party. We can stagger breaks for any dealers that need them, or you can avoid dealer breaks entirely by adding one extra "relief" dealer.
Once the casino opens, guests can walk up to their favorite table and hand either $500 or the whole $1,000 to the dealer, who will in turn exchange this money for casino chips. Our casino chips are clearly marked with denominations that range from $25 to $10,000, and each denomination has a different color so guests can easily tell each one apart. Typically, once they hand in their funny money to the dealer, guests receive a combination of $25 chips and $100 chips to start, as many people tend to start their betting rather conservatively. Because our smallest chips are $25 chips, this usually serves as the minimum bet at each table. Once guests start getting involved in the action, their stack of $25 and $100 chips might start getting larger and larger, at which point the dealer at their table might "color them up" and exchange their smaller denomination chips for larger-valued chips. In this way, as guests go from table to table, they're not necessarily carrying an unwieldy amount of chips. On the other hand, if someone actually goes on a losing streak and runs out of all their chips and funny money before the end of the party, our crew can always give you a stack of extra $500 bills to distribute at your discretion. Some clients like to play it more strictly and not give any additional money if guests run out, wanting to be extremely fair to everyone, while other clients are more laid back and allow guests to keep coming to them for more funny money. Some clients get creative with the whole scheme, giving away more funny money as needed, but also planning a gag-gift of some sort for the person who goes through the most money over the course of the night.
After three hours of gambling, our dealers will start announcing the last hand, the last spin of the wheel, and the last throw of the dice. Guests will be instructed to go back to their favorite table and turn in their casino chips. If you choose to have a raffle we'll provide raffle tickets free of charge. You can choose to run the raffle yourself or our "pit boss" would be happy to do it for you.
At this point, each of your dealers will "cash everyone out," meaning that they'll count up everyone's winnings in chips and convert these to raffle tickets. The simple idea is that the more chips you've won over the course of the night, the more raffle tickets you'll earn at the end of the night. The standard conversion that we've found to work best is giving one raffle ticket for every $500 in chips that guests have left at the end of the night, rounding up as needed. For example, if someone simply breaks even and ends up with $1,000 in chips, they would earn two raffle tickets. Alternatively, if someone has $1,100 in chips, they would earn three raffle tickets. Keep in mind that a handful of your guests might win big and end up with a lot of chips, so you don't want a smaller conversion that requires them to walk around with a roll of thousands of raffle tickets. One ticket for every $500 tends to work out quite well – not too many and not too few tickets for each of your guests.
What Do Guests Win?
At this point you might be asking, "If no one is playing for real money, why should anyone take the gambling seriously? And what are these tickets for?" In one word: PRIZES! Although you'll have to provide the prizes, this is what gives your guests the incentive to play for keeps. You don't need to go wild and crazy when coming up with prizes – items like a Starbucks gift card, dinner for two at a local restaurant, gift certificates, a manicure/pedicure/facial for the ladies or sports-related items for the guys, and small electronics like an iPod Shuffle or iPod Nano are all popular prizes. Some clients have even gotten rather creative and given away things like 6-month Netflix subscriptions, which aren't too expensive but very practical! Our advice is always to think about items that your particular guests might actually love to win. In terms of how many prizes, it's always nice to have more than one if possible, but even this isn't set in stone. If you do have multiple prizes though, you might like to designate one as the grand prize which could be raffled off last.
One last thing to note regarding prizes. Some clients ask us about the possibility of giving away prizes to the biggest winner, or the top 3 biggest winners, for example. We always advise against doing this, however, as we find that some guests begin to "pool their chips," resulting in a situation where the biggest winner isn't necessarily the person who won the most, but the person who was able to grab the most chips from their friends. Also, you don't want those of your guests who are new to gambling to get discouraged if they look over and see someone with a gigantic stack of chips early on in the night. Giving away your prizes by way of random drawing helps everyone to walk away feeling that they were treated fairly.
It may sound like a lot of details, but remember that our crew brings everything you'll need, from the funny money to the tables, cards, chips, & accessories to the raffle tickets, and they'll handle all the logistics all night, even emceeing the entire raffle for you if you'd prefer not to do any talking. If you have any questions about what you've read though, don't hesitate to call us at 404-334-3248 – we'd love to hear from you!