As Jane Campbell plays her cards to bring casino gambling to Cleveland, David Grunenwald bets that a friendly hand of Texas Hold 'Em will draw a full house this summer at the Nautica Charity Poker Festival.
Here's how it works: Players plunk down $15 an hour for a seat at the table. Bets range from $1 to $10 at the 30 tables, each of which includes up to 10 players. Each table's champ pockets his winnings. "There's a lot of bingo games here in Cleveland, and it didn't seem to fit," says Grunenwald, an avid Texas Hold 'Em player who's organized the festival. "Blackjack is more of playing against the house. But when you play Texas Hold 'Em, everybody's playing everybody else at the table."
Popularized by now-ubiquitous professional and celebrity tournaments on TV, the game is a cinch to learn. "Some of the other card games are a little bit more intricate, but this one is very simple," says Grunenwald. "For that reason, people like it." Shuffle up and deal from 4 p.m. to midnight Thursday through Sunday, from now until September 4 at the Nautica Entertainment Complex, 2000 Sycamore Street. Players must be at least 21 years old. Visit www.nauticacharitypoker.org for more info. -- Cris Glaser
Powwow includes tepees, tomahawks, and childbirth.
Besides the Native American dance competitions and traditional regalia pageants happening at this weekend's Competition Powwow, you might even see a birth. Each year between 1998 and 2002, a woman went into labor inside one of the tepees at this annual contest between Native Americans. "It was a little scary," says Bob Roche, director of the American Indian Education Center in Cleveland. More than 550 tribes from as far as Alaska and Nova Scotia will compete for $6,000 in prize money, in contests ranging from drum-offs to group dance challenges. Singer Mitch Walking Elk and flutist Douglas Bluefeather headline the entertainment lineup. "We're here, and we're not going away," says Roche, a Chiricahua Apache. Powwow from 3 p.m. to dusk Friday and 11 a.m. to dusk Saturday and Sunday at Edgewater State Park, at the west end of the Shoreway. Admission is $9, $6 for kids; call 216-351-4488. -- Cris Glaser
In the Wee Hours
DJ Ronnie E. gets Saturday-night fever.
Ronnie E. credits a potty break for helping him land his DJ gig at the Saturday Night Dance Party. At an Okinawa bar 10 years ago, Ronnie was learning how to work the turntables from a fellow Marine, who suddenly heard the call of nature. "He said, 'Bring that song down and hit the green button. I gotta go to the bathroom,'" recalls Ronnie, aka Ron Ezzo. "Boom! I got the fever." Ever since, Ezzo has spun Top 40 remixes that you'll hear at the theme dance nights. (This weekend, the theme plays off the Gay Pride Festival.) "After 10 years, I feel like I've made it," says Ezzo. Party starts at 11 p.m. at House of Blues, 308 Euclid Avenue. Admission is $5, free before midnight; call 216-235-2583. -- Cris Glaser
A Summer Night's Dream
The Museum of Contemporary Art kicks off its Moca Mix summer series on Friday with Fever Dreams, a collection of more than 30 short films presented by 20,000 Leagues Under the Industry. Included are Monkey vs. Robot, in which a primate and a mechanical man square off, and Blood Drinkers, which purports to be a long-lost trailer from a forgotten 1940s horror flick. It starts at 8 p.m. at MOCA, 8501 Carnegie Avenue. Admission is $7; call 216-421-8671. -- Michael Gallucci