The ninth annual Ante4Autism Poker Tournament, held Jan. 22 during the Winter Las Vegas Market at the Golden Nugget Hotel & Casino, raised more than $100,000 to support five autism charities—Autism Speaks, Bike to the Beach, Families for Effective Autism Treatment of Southern Nevada, Lettuce Work and the National Autism Association of Southeast Ohio.
Participation in the tournament set a record with close to 200 players and an audience of hundreds. Leggett & Platt Inc. was the presenting sponsor, and Symbol Mattress sponsored the final table. The fundraiser was founded by Doug Krinsky, a veteran mattress-industry sales executive, formerly with Restonic and now with Brooklyn Bedding. He is the father of an autistic child.
Many in the bedding and home furnishings industry—as well as a host of celebrities, professional poker players and Las Vegas-area residents—regularly play in the tournament. Among the celebrities present Jan. 22 were Erik Aude, Jose Canseco and Jacqueline Laurita, as well as professional poker players Karina Jett, Chip Jett and Frank Kassela.
In addition to Krinsky, the following people were event co-hosts: Joseph Amato, Stuart Carlitz, Randy Coconis, Karina Jett, Mike McQuiston, Anthony Mehran, Phil Miner, Allen Parvizian, Myra Stone and Jerry Williams.
Sponsors L&P and Symbol were joined by the following companies and individuals, who supported the event:
- $10,000 Double Diamond sponsor: Ashley Furniture Industries Inc.
- $5,000 Diamond sponsors: Karl and Cathi Glassman
- $2,500 Platinum sponsors: APAR Management, Eclipse International/Eastman House, Elfa International, High Risk Pregnancy Center of Las Vegas, A. Lava & Son, Planned Furniture Promotions and Protect-A-Bed
- $1,000 Gold sponsors: BoxDrop Mattress & Furniture Direct, Angelique Clark, Custom Fundraising Solutions, Roger Magowitz, Mantua Manufacturing, Restonic, Myra Stone and Monnier Furniture, and Shari Wagner
- $500 Silver sponsors: Big Sandy Superstores, Coconis Furniture, Creative Ticking, CFS of Indianapolis, David Deye, Gary Fazio, Furniture Fair, Jones Fiber, Judi and Kerry Lebensburger, Maxime Knitting, Larry McKay, Janet Pickett and Jim Ruwe, and Richmond Furniture Gallery
- $250 Bronze sponsors: Cranes Mattress Superstore, Great American Furniture Services, Kevin Toman and Englander, and David Wachendorfer.
The 10th annual Ante4Autism Poker Tournament is set for Jan. 28, 2018. For details, check the event website, Ante4Autism.com.