Sometimes you got to squeeze
Sometimes you got to say please
Sometime you got to say, hey…

– Tenacious D

Run It Up Reno tournaments are a blast to play. (I know this firsthand now, since I played a few days ago myself.) But all the players who bust out before the final table need a release, something away from the poker tables where they can let loose the energy they keep stored up at the tables all day long. Last night the Edge Nightclub here at the Peppermill played host to the biggest, best release of all the social events on the RIU Reno schedule: Karaoke Night.

The party officially started at 9 p.m. With two tournaments still running upstairs the crowd grew by trickles as Run It Up social media manager and longtime Karaoke Night host Jesse Fullen did a test with DJ Kool’s “Let Me Clear My Throat.”

The singers’ choices ran the gamut from Black Sabbath and Red Hot Chili Peppers to Brooks & Dunn and Maren Morris to Men Without Hats and Tenacious D. With more than 6,000 songs to choose from, there genuinely was no telling what would come next.

Sorry I’m late!

Good times in Reno

Members of the crowd continued filling out slips with their songs of choice for three solid hours. The room filled up, the drinks flowed, and the good times rolled on.

The crowd takes in Karaoke Night

Trophy + karaoke = good times

Was everyone a great singer? Absolutely not! That’s why I felt comfortable enough to sing Johnny Cash’s “Folsom Prison Blues” myself. Like the rest of Run It Up Reno, the whole point was to get together, have a good time, and see another side of the players you spend so much time with at the table.

Livin’ it up, sexy-saxophone-man style

RIU Reno brings out the happy faces

Sykyk won the trophy for in the men’s division for his performance of “Safety Dance” by Men Without Hats. Here he is earlier in the night performing Rob Zombie’s “Dragula”:

The champion in the women’s division was Survivor alumna Shirin Oskooi. Her song of choice was the same one she won for last year, a Tenacious D classic, one whose name we can’t really print here but some of whose lyrics started off this post and whose title rhymes with “Chuck Her Bentley.” (Work with me here, people.)

Here she is with her first performance of the night, a duet with Andy P on Madonna’s “Like A Prayer.”

If the 10 a.m. start time for today’s Moneymaker Tour Platinum Pass event crossed anybody’s mind last night, they didn’t let on.

Toronto in the house

Just like a prayer, Andy P will take you there

I chatted with a few dozen people throughout the night, meeting poker players from all around North America and even a few from Europe.

Cheers!

I’m not much for karaoke, generally speaking, but this was a great night of music and getting to know the poker players who make this event special. If you’re thinking about attending a future edition of Run It Up Reno, make sure not to skip this party.

RIU Reno Karaoke Night host Jesse Fullen


Photography courtesy of Run It Up and Sebastian Diaz Photography

Jason has covered poker since 2005. He lives in Washington state with his wife and three dogs.

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