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Poker night party guide

Dice and a deck of cards.

Who's in for poker night? We've got a winning hand for planning a successful poker party, from set-up to game options to drinks. Check out our tip for planning and hosting a memorable night.

Invitations

Get started by sending an Evite invitation, like the free “Who’s In?” cards-themed invitation, or check out our game night invitation gallery for more designs.

Decorations

Setting up your poker table (or tables!) is key! It’s easy to find a home poker kit that includes cards, nice chips and a good playing surface. But if you don’t have one of these fancy kits, take a trip to a fabric store and get a big swatch of green felt to put over your tabletop.

It’s important to make sure you have enough poker chips for all of your guests. You probably can’t get by with less than 35 chips per person—most experts suggest 50 to 100 per head. If you don’t mind a mish-mash of chips, ask your guests to bring extra chips. If you’re playing Texas Hold ‘Em, make sure you have a special chip set aside for the button.

Another tip: If you have guests with different skill levels and comfortability, consider having tables for learners and experts.

To round out the theme, pick up some casino-themed napkins and plates decorated with images of dice, cards or dollar signs from a party store.

Attire

This is the perfect event to raise the stakes—with the outfits! Even if you’re not playing for high stakes, asking guests to come in cocktail attire (suits and ties, dresses) is a fun excuse to get dressed up and get in the mood.

We also recommend getting cheap costume armbands and green plastic dealer visors—your guests will love it!

Playing with some card sharks? If they arrive wearing shirts with billowy sleeves, make sure they roll them up when you play so they can’t hide cards in them.

Variations

Texas Hold ‘Em is usually front and center, but you can have a great card party with poker variations: Five-card Draw, Seven-card Stud, Hi/lo, Baseball Poker and other make-up-your-own-rules games.

The most important thing when playing poker is to be familiar with the winning hands. Here they are from high to low:

  • Royal flush
  • Straight flush
  • Four of a kind
  • Full house
  • Flush
  • Straight
  • Three of a kind
  • Two pair
  • One pair

Or, just remember that a full house flushes a straight.

Food

This is the perfect night for appetizers, hors d’oeuvres and charcuterie boards that you can prepare beforehand. We recommend frozen appetizers that are easy for you to heat in the microwave or oven so you can focus on the games! Pizza is always a good option, especially if the games go late into the night. Set up your food and drinks with some casual seating nearby for guests who want a break or prefer to socialize.

Drinks

If you’re playing poker, you might be thinking martinis are in order. Martinis will make your party upscale for sure (think James Bond, though his game was baccarat). Single-malt scotch is also great to have on hand. For cocktails, consider the classy Sidecar.

Sidecar

  • 2 parts Cognac
  • 1 part triple sec
  • 1 part freshly squeezed lemon juice

Pour all ingredients into a cocktail shaker. Add ice. Shake, then strain into a chilled highball glass.

Some say that serious cards need to be played without the influence of booze. So for a non-alcoholic alternative, grab some carbonated soda water and mix it up with some Italian syrup.

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Evite SignUp Sheets offers parents, teachers and event planners customizable online forms that organizers and volunteers can access and update effortlessly. Volunteers can choose their preferred time slots, sign up for tasks or indicate what they'll bring to the event. It only takes organizers a few minutes to create a signup sheet and send it out with a shareable link, so they can get the word out via text, email or social media—whichever way they prefer! 

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How do I create a signup sheet?

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  1. Go to Evite SignUp Sheets and choose the template that best fits your needs. Evite offers multiple signup sheet templates perfect for every occasion, including:some text
    • Signup sheets for standalone events (without different time slots), perfect for when you’re organizing a class party, potluck or end-of-season party.
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  1. After selecting your sheet template, create a title for your signup sheet and add the date, the location, the time (if applicable), who the organizer is, the organizer’s phone number or email and an optional note describing the event to your volunteers. You can also change your signup sheet background and title image if you wish!
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What information should be included on a signup sheet?

When it comes to signup sheet information, there are some essentials to include regardless of what you’re organizing:

  1. A title for your signup sheet. Tip: Aim to keep your signup sheet title concise but clear. You want volunteers to read it and have a general understanding of what your event is about, and also make it easy for them to look for later if they need to reference your sheet again. You have the option to include a more descriptive note in a different field about your event, so save the more in-depth details for that!
  1. When and where the event is taking place. 
  1. The organizer’s name and phone number.
  1. Slots for volunteers to choose from. Once you choose the SignUp Sheets template that fits the occasion, the slots you’ll need for your sheet will be right there and ready for you to add the relevant info, such as dates, times, items to bring and tasks to complete. 

When adding your slot information, clearly define what people are signing up for, especially for a what-to-bring list or role assignments. If you want someone to bring healthy snacks for kids to enjoy after a game, specify that. You want your volunteers to feel confident in what they’re bringing and to make it easy for them to know what’s expected of them. It will save them time and stress (and you, too!). That being said, if you make your ask too specific (for example, asking for a hard-to-source item or something expensive), you may not end up with a volunteer for it. So be clear about what you expect, but also be reasonable!

Aside from providing the basic signup information, you can also add optional descriptions to both your entire signup sheet and individual slots. While not required, they can help guide your volunteers further and provide more information. You can add information about allergies, preferences and general info about the event. You can also add a wish list to make it easier for your volunteers to bring exactly what you need!

What are the benefits of using a signup sheet template?

Signup sheet templates offer a ton of advantages for both organizers and volunteers and with Evite SignUp Sheets, you'll enjoy even more benefits than other digital and paper signup sheets! Some benefits our signup sheet templates offer include:

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With Evite SignUp Sheets, you can enjoy organizing and coordinating all your events with ease. Signup sheets streamline the signup process for everyone involved, ensuring that everything will go to plan on the day of your event while saving you precious time in the process.

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