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South Rotary readies for fundraiser
Monte Carlo night back March 10
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Forsyth County News

If you go

For more on the Rotary Club of South Forsyth’s Monte Carlo Casino Night, go online at www.rotarymontecarlonight.com.

When the chips are down, the Rotary Club of South Forsyth is there to help — just not necessarily on Monte Carlo Casino Night.

During the club’s annual fundraiser, it’s everybody for themselves on the blackjack, craps and Texas Hold’em tables.

The event, slated for March 10 at the Lanier Technical College Forsyth Conference Center, is in its 19th year. Founder Charles Smith still remembers the first.

“We went and rented equipment and we trained the members of the South Forsyth Rotary Club how to deal the different card games,” Smith said. “They got so big after the first one that they finally decided to rent the equipment and pay the dealers to come with it.”

The first event was designed to raise money for a boys lodge. It has since grown to include several children-focused organizations in the county, including Jesse’s House, CASA and the Miracle League.

This year’s gathering will be similar to years past, said organizer James Daniel. Only the venue has changed.

“We outgrew our facility at the Polo Country Club,” Daniel said. “That’s our big, big news. And it’s going to be a bigger event this year, so we’re pretty excited about that.”

Daniel said he expects as many as 450 people, which would be about 100 more than in 2011.

Though he doesn’t get to play because he’s too busy ensuring the event runs smoothly, Daniel said he has a good time watching others. It’s also a great way to learn how to play Texas Hold’em.

“For folks that are new to the game, the dealers are very easygoing, and they’ll teach people how to play,” he said. “It’s not like in Vegas, when you’re expected to be an expert. They’ll be happy to teach you the game.”

In addition to the tables, the event will include a silent auction, featuring large prizes from vacations to a custom motorcycle.

With the bigger venue and larger crowd, Daniel said he hopes to exceed the fundraising goal of $50,000.

“Last year, we were a little under that,” he said. “What’s neat about this event is it’s one place for folks to have a good time and know that their money … will filter right back down into the community.”