The concept of the World Tavern Poker was developed in 2003 while I was sitting with Joe Hatch, the owner of a local tavern.
As we enjoyed a few beers, the World Series of Poker was playing on the television screens. He and I were both avid amateur poker players. As I looked around, I noticed that everyone in the place was focused on the poker on the TVs. “Look how popular this game is”, I said, “imagine if you could hold poker tournaments for fun right here, do you know how crowded you would be? We will make it free to all the players so that it is not gambling and give away great prizes to the winners” And that was it; Joe agreed to give it a try, and a few weeks later we held the first World Tavern Poker event. With no advertising and only a week of planning, Woody's was packed. We were turning players away and they did 2-3 times the normal business.
From that time forward, the success of these tournaments kept growing until we decided to take the concept nationally. We knew that in order to make this venture successful, we would need to focus on 2 critical success factors-Make It Affordable & Make It Easy for the bar owners.
With other companies charging up to $300/night to run tournaments, the extra profits are quickly eaten away. We knew that we had to
create a system that is so simple that anyone could run a poker tournament.
To create an International Organization that provides tavern owners the system & tools to create, manage and market successful Poker Tournaments resulting in both great excitement and great profits for their business.
So if you are a Tavern Owner looking to take your business to the next level or simply fill up the place on a slow night, then we encourage you to join the World Tavern Poker Tour.
You simply won't believe the crowds!
Mike grew up in Southern New Jersey and lived in and around Atlantic City during college. He has always worked for himself, primarily because who the h**l would hire him? He loves creating new companies, playing poker and shots of just about anything.
Co-Founder/National Sales Manager
Nancy grew up in Brick, NJ and has years of experience in sales and marketing as well as many years of experience putting up with Mike...that alone qualifies her for almost any position in any company. Nancy and Mike have 2 sons and daughter (Brittany, Michael and Riley) who love playing poker. In fact Michael won 2 online tournaments at the age of 4!
Stephen has been in Chapel Hill, NC since high school and has worked with Mike at his chain of mattress stores. He has also been the administrator for a local angel investment group. Stephen is married with 2 children and is living proof that there is an element of luck in poker!
Executive in Charge of Keeping the ADHD Founder on Task
Kathy grew up in Thomasville, NC and then showed her superior intellect by choosing to attend Duke University. Go Blue Devils! She has lived in the Triangle area for the last 25 years. Kathy has been a stock broker and was a franchisee with Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream. She sold her stores a couple of years ago and is still trying to figure out what she wants to be when she grows. Kathy@WorldTavernPoker.com
Dave grew up in Richmond, VA and graduated from James Madison University. He joined the WTP team after finding out about the position through Craiglist. He is threatened daily with the reposting of the Craigslist job ad if he screws up. Dave is married to his gorgeous wife, Julie.
Hollie, Hunterdon and their six Australian Cattle Dogs moved to The Poconos, Pennsylvania in 2003 from sunny Southern California. Hollie "graduated" from Trenton State College after six years of intensive drinking, game playing and bartending. Hollie began playing World Tavern Poker in 2005, ran her first games in 2006 and has been growing her poker family ever since! Hollie's hobbies include camping, crafting and fighting with Mike.
Rose grew up in Steubenville, Ohio. She attended the University of Steubenville, and graduated with a BA in MassCom. She was a teacher in Tampa, then “retired” to raise her 2 sons, Jamie & Patrick. In 1995 she moved to Raleigh. Rose started playing World Tavern Poker at Raleigh Ale House-Creekside in 2005 as a way to get out of the house. Eventually, she became a Tournament Director at O’Dwyers, and then Front Row.
"The G Man"
G grew up in Ocean City, NJ and still reside in the Atlantic City area. He started playing World Tavern Poker around 2005 when we only had one bar in our area (King Pin Lanes). Now we have over 17 bars in our area that feature World Tavern Entertainment venues and we keep on growing. I have a beautiful wife and two wonderful kids. I’m a diesel mechanic for our local township since 1992…. retirement is around the corner. Once I retire I plan on taking the South Jersey Region by storm.
Central Jersey Franchise Owners
Matt & Marie McCarthy
After moving over 23 times in her life, Marie settled right back where she started in her native state of New Jersey. Marie met her husband while sitting next to him at a poker table. Three years later on November 2 they were married on stage by Reverend Mike Matsinger on Fremont Street at the 9th World Tavern Poker Open. After over 11 years in Real Estate, Marie and her husband Matt became WTP franchisees for a New Jersey Region.
Dick and Charlotte Macartney
Coastal Carolina Franchise Owners
Dick and Charlotte have been married for 40 years. Charlotte retired from teaching High School History and Dick completed a 40 year career in the Food Business. After playing poker in World Tavern leagues for 3 years the opportunity to help grow the brand in the Eastern Carolina market seemed like a fun thing to do while supplementing a retirement income. We are looking forward to helping more bars and taverns earn money from Trivia and Poker.
NC/VA Franchise Owner
“Professor of Donkeyology”
Patrick grew up in North Carolina. After graduating high school, he spent 4 years in the Marine Corps. He is a graduate of Appalachian State in NC and Thomas Edison State College in NJ. He spent 15 years in the education field where he met his most awesome wife and business partner Angela. In 2009 he and Angela made the decision to become franchise owners with World Tavern Entertainment.
NC/VA Franchise Owner
Angela grew up in Richmond, Virginia. After graduating from Longwood University she moved to North Carolina to work at a Wilderness Therapy Camp to help troubled teenagers. While there she met her husband, Patrick. After getting tired of living in the 21st century with no electricity she and Patrick decided to move to Raleigh - where Patrick became a World Tavern Poker addict. When she finally decided that she was not going to be able to rid him of this addiction, she decided to join him.
Central Maryland Franchise Owner
Chris graduated from Stanford University in 1993 with a degree in economics, which he hasn't used since. Instead he spent 14 years navigating the choppy waters of our nation's banking and mortgage industries. After praying the housing market wouldn't implode while he had his own mortgage office for 3 years, he retreated to "stay at home dad" status. During this time, he only left the house for World Tavern Poker online games. He now hopes to leave the house more while growing the Central Maryland region. ChrisH@WorldTavernEntertainment.com
Northeast Massachusetts Franchise Owner
Mark grew up for the most part in Easton, MA. Mark is an avid poker player and trivia buff. After being laid off during the economic downtown, Mark decided that bartending wasn’t a career for him and decided to put his poker, trivia and sales skills to use and bought a World Tavern Entertainment Franchise. Winning the 2009 World Tavern Trivia National Championship helped influence his decision (as well as increasing the size of his head to almost the same size as Mike’s!).
Wes started his Texas Hold'em career in 2003 while playing poker in his kitchen with friends. His passion for poker grew over the following 5 years. At the same time he joined the World Tavern Poker league. Wes has taken his passion for poker to the next level and joined the World Tavern Entertainment team as a franchisee. This move allows Wes the opportunity join the fun in growing the World Tavern leagues in Western NJ and Eastern PA.
Mark and Sarah Thomas
Outlaw Tavern Entertprises
Mark and Sarah, both native New Mexicans, were married in 1998 and have two children. Mark has his degree in Applied Sciences and works in an Engineering Firm, Sarah has a degree In Business Administration and is a Sales Assistant for Stock Brokers. Mark’s brother, Jimmy, was an avid poker player and the owner of Doc & Eddy’s in Albuquerque. Jim and Katie (mom and dad) played in a World Tavern Poker league in Arizona and the family got the league started at Doc & Eddy’s. Sarah found herself playing a game she had never played before. Mark found himself playing a game he has played all his life. After the last open in Vegas, Mark came home and said let’s do this.