Category Archives: Poker Stories

A nice review from

A while back we created our first interview video featuring my Mom.  We were tickled to see that PokerFaceNews enjoyed the interview and wrote such a nice review.

Head on over to PokerFaceNews to view the post, visit their website, and watch the interview!

You can also follow them on Twitter at @PokerFaceNews

Thanks PokerFaceNews!

Paul Smith
Poker Night in America



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It all started at the poker game…

In August 2011 we had our annual beach party called the “Carpinteria Yacht Club Fishing/Regatta”.  This event is an ocean fishing tournament in blow-up rafts.  It has raised about $50,000.00 for charity over the last 20 years and it all started at the poker game.

In the summer of 1991 in Dan Rockwell’s garage we were playing our usual Tuesday night game of dealer’s choice, quarter limit poker.  We discussed a fishing tournament that we had just attended at Lake Casitas, that was hosted by one of our regular players, Greg Nesheim.

Well since we lived by the great Pacific Ocean and had been fishing in the kelp beds for a while, with smashing success, we decided to have a fishing tournament in the ocean using rubber rafts only.  Since Carpinteria didn’t have a harbor, we felt cleared to call our fleet of inflatable’s The Carpinteria Yacht Club.  Just south of Santa Barbara, on the Pacific Coast this small town is perfect for having family fun in the sun.  Every fishing trip is and adventure.  Just getting past the breakers “DRY” is a real accomplishment.

Over the years we have had a lot of fun fishing and racing our ultra light blow-up yachts.  But one year in, I believe it was 2004, my daughter Jennifer was diagnosed with cancer.  Just out of college with a degree in graphic communications, a brain tumor threatened her life.  Luckily we had the Cancer Center of Santa Barbara right across the street from the hospital and they operated that night.  After removing a 7 centimeter tumor, she had radiation and chemo therapy and she came out the other side, a bright shiney cancer survivor.  She is fine now but that year, scared to death, we came together as a club, we rented the Lions Club building and with our first poker tournament we raised $10,000.00 as a thank you to the Cancer Center of Santa Barbara.  Our club sent our young tournament winner to the World Series of Poker.  He didn’t win but he played in the WSOP.

A lot happened that year. Today, Jenny is happily married and moving up in her chosen profession.  As a club, it was our best year and “it all started at the poker game”…

Paul Smith
Carpinteria Yacht Club
1991 – 2011

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