A Canadian poker tour company is offering a special Texas Hold'em program for children as young as 10-years-old, the Canadian Press reported this week. The two-day event aims to improve participants' math and communications skills, ability to perform under stress, analytical thinking, and good sportsmanship by teaching them the fundamentals of Texas Hold'em.
The tour costs $120 and offers participants one and a half days of instruction and a half-day tournament. It is run by Nevada North's Kids Poker Tour and is based in Vancouver, British Columbia.
According to spokesperson Larry Klatt, the tour has garnered quite a bit of attention and controversy, including a frown from B.C. Solicitor General John Les.
"I'd like the whole tour to pass us by. I think this is inappropriate. I think this is targeting a vulnerable population," says Les. "They want to come in here and get kids involved in poker. I think their objective is clear, they just want to raise customers for tomorrow."
Programming is currently being revised in accordance with the law, including the cancellation of prizes such as educational subsidies and free admission to future events.
"We're not going to step out of bounds. We'll revise this, we're not looking to do anything outside the law," says Klatt. "This is more like an educational workshop focusing on skills development."