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PokerStars December Festival Underway

Yes, I know, I know. PokerStars is not very high up on your Christmas card list right now. After years of being a fan favorite, the giant of an online poker room may have finally made Santa’s naughty list after instituting several customer-unfriendly policy changes in the last few months. But damned if they don’t put together some solid promotions at times. This month, PokerStars is going all out, trying to win some customers back (though it’s not as if Stars will fall from the top spot without an executive order) with a series of promos packaged into the December Festival.

One promo, unfortunately, has already come and gone, but it’s not like any of you were going to win something in it, anyway. PokerStars ran one of their classic milestone hands promotions during the first week of the month, though it wasn’t specifically tied to a major milestone like the one billionth hand or something like that. In this one, every millionth hand was the lucky one where everyone at the table won extra money. The 300th time that happened was the final time and the very lucky winners nabbed ten times the prize those in the other 299 milestone hands won. Additionally, anyone who was playing at the exact same type of table (stakes, game type, etc.) as the 300th milestone hand won money. Nice, right? But yeah, you weren’t going to win anything, so don’t sweat it.

Take Aim

This week, though, isn’t over, so it’s not too late to take part in Knockout Week. PokerStars is running a number of knockout and progressive knockout tournaments every day through Sunday with a total of $5 million in guaranteed prize money. For the unfamiliar, in knockout tournaments, part of the prize pool goes to the regular cash prizes based on order of finish, while the rest of it is used to put a bounty on every player’s head. Whenever someone is eliminated, the player who did the deed receives the bounty. In progressive knockout tournaments, the person who does the eliminating gets part of the bounty, with the other part being added to his own bounty, making him a juicier target.

Fast Fold Action

Next week, from December 15th through December 21st, is the Red Aces Zoom & BOOM portion of the December Festival. It’s pretty straight-forward. If a player wins a hand post-flop holding two red Aces as hole cards on any six-handed or nine-handed Zoom Poker cash game table, he wins 50 times that table’s big blind in addition to whatever he won from his opponents. The one catch, aside from the fact a flop must be seen, is that the player must immediately upload the hand to the BOOM! Hand Replayer in order to claim the prize.

The maximum prize per player per day is $50. Players can claim multiple prizes, but only the most lucrative one, up to $50, will count. For example, if someone wins twice, once for $25 and once for $50, he will receive $50, not $75. Similarly, if someone wins $25 twice, he will only receive one of the prizes, even though they add up to $50.

Might as Well Play the Lottery PokerStars Spin & Go

Running all month, through December 30th, is the $1 Million Spin & Go promotion. In this one, special $5 Spin & Go tables have been added to the mix. The games will transpire as they always do, with the random prize pool determined before the three-handed, hyper-turbo game starts. The possibly prize multipliers are the same as always except for the top two. The second highest multiplier has been increase from 240 times the buy-in to a whopping 1,200 times, while the highest multiplier is just a sick 240,000, making the total prize pool $1.2 million with $1 million going to the winner and $100,000 going to the other two players. The chances of this hitting are staggeringly small, just 3 in 10 million, but hey, if you like playing Spin & Go tournaments, might as well give it a shot.

Sunday Sunday

December 21st has been dubbed Double Vision Sunday, as the Sunday majors will all be held twice, once in six-max format and once in nine-max. Both Sunday Kickoff  tournaments will start at 8:00 ET, the Sunday Warm-ups will be at 11:00 ET, the Sunday Storms will begin at 13:30 ET, and the two Sunday Millions will be at 14:30 ET. A total of $3.8 million is guaranteed across the board.

Even More Sunday

If you don’t get what you want from Santa, you might want to test your skill in the Sunday Million on December 28th. That is because PokerStars is guaranteeing a $5 million prize pool and at least $500,000 for first place. That could buy you quite a few pairs of socks.


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