Saturday, March 4, 2006

World's first online poker wedding only days away

With the world's first online poker wedding only days away,, the world's largest online poker room is incubating its newest enterprise - a Party Poker offspring! The bride and groom Jackie Johnson and Gary Suffir have announced they are planning to start a family and that all bets are for a baby called Chip - if it is a boy.

The couple first met online on in September 2004 in a $30 Omaha game in the site's virtual chat rooms after Jackie defended Gary in a row over a bad beat. After initially communicating via the buddy function on the website and being in consistent contact for months after that, Jackie moved to New York City from Las Vegas to live with Gary in March 2005. Now a year later, they are getting hitched at the Paris Hotel in Vegas on March 7th, with famous poker ambassador Mike Sexton as a witness. And the couple are rapidly stacking the deck by planning a new family.

"We thought that if the baby is a boy we could call it Mike after Mike Sexton but in honor of the way we met we'll call him Chip," said a smiling Gary. "If our baby is a girl we may call her Linda after Linda Johnson, the first lady of poker, but Queenie is a possibility."

What about Doyle after poker legend Doyle Brunson? "I don't think so - my chips would be on Chip." added Gary, a 28-year-old New York attorney.

Gary and Jackie are celebrating their honeymoon on the Party Poker Million V Cruise around the Caribbean, starting on March 12th. With their minds on a family and the full house it would bring the poker mad couple aren't worried about building a bankroll on the cruise, they already figure they have a royal flush. "It is going to be great playing poker on our honeymoon," said Jackie, who credits Gary with her improved Omaha play. The couple actually considered having their honeymoon in Omaha, Nebraska but the card-playing cruise stopping in Jamaica and Grand Cayman won the day.

Gary and Jackie's friends and family are taking part in a special online tournament before the ceremony, while plans for the wedding itself include a unique poker wedding cake and poker floral displays. There was speculation that the soon-to-be Mr. and Mrs. Suffir would dress as a king and queen and request 'Cry Me A River' for their first dance, but their celebration of happiness and poker is being handled as straight as their poker faces.

The couple couldn't be happier as they contemplate going all-in for life. "We're just so happy to have found each other and we can't wait to start a family," said Jackie, a 27 year-old artist. spokesman Warren Lush said: "It is with great delight that we are hosting what we believe is the world's first online poker wedding. We hope that they'll have and to hold'em forever and ever."