ACR Raises Millions for Feeding America COVID-19 Response

ACR Raises Millions for Feeding America COVID-19 Response

This past Saturday took people from all walks of life to Twitch. Most of them were poker fans but all were there to watch two huge tournaments livestreamed to benefit charities responding to the COVID-19 crisis in the United States.

One tournament was a 32-player heads-up No Limit Hold’em event, pitting pro players against everyone else to raise money for GiveDirectlly. The tournament played out on Run It Once Poker, headed up by Phil Galfond, and they raised more than $32,500 for the cause. Even more, Dan Smith’s Double Up Drive charity pledged to match funds up to $250K for GiveDirectly.

GiveDirectly is an organization that helps families in need with direct donations of cash, currently reaching out to people around America who are directly impacted by the economic recession prompted by the coronavirus pandemic.

And then there was the celebrity extravaganza on Americas Cardroom.

Starting with $1 Million

The tournament kicked off with Americas Cardroom, the flagship online poker site on the Winning Poker Network, donating $1 million to Feeding America.

The buy-in was $10K per player, all of which went directly to Feeding America. That meant there was no prize pool, but the goal was to benefit the charity and have fun in the meantime.

Dubbed the All-In for America Celebrity Poker Tournament, ACR set the tournament up to livestream on Twitch and promised some big names. And they definitely confirmed their participation on social media – names like Ben Affleck, Tom Brady, Jason Bateman, Aaron Paul, Matt Damon, Tobey Maguire, Adam Sandler, Sarah Silverman, Adam Levine, and John Krasinski. Of course, some of the biggest names in poker – Doyle Brunson, Phil Hellmuth – planned to play, too.

Kenney Wins Bragging Rights

The tournament drew a total of 65 entries, totaling a minimum of $650K. This came from 58 unique players and seven reentries.

The above-listed celebrities played, as well as Jon Hamm, Cheryl Hines, Kevin Smith, and Brian Cranston. The poker pros joining in the action included Jason Koon, Alex Foxen, Todd Brunson, Jeff Gross, Jaime Staples, and Mike McDonald.

But it was poker pro Ebony Kenney who worked the crowd and made it to the final table, eliminating names like Damon and Hellmuth along the way.

The final three players included comedian Andy Milonakis, who exited in third place, and actor and comedian Kevin Pollak, who made it to heads-up against Kenney. Kenney won it and had quite a bit of fun doing it.

According to CardPlayer, Americas Cardroom donated more money to bring the grand total of donations to near $2 million.

Feeding America Continues to Help

The organization that benefited from the ACR tournament was Feeding America, a nonprofit organization feeding people in America for more than 35 years.

Through more than 200 food banks across the country, Feeding America tries to put a dent in the problem of millions of households being food insecure. In 2018, there were 14.3 million American households with limited or uncertain access to enough food.

When the coronavirus pandemic began inflicting economic harm on the United States, Feeding America launched the COVID-19 Response Fund to specifically help people affected by the situation. They worked with school districts and local governments to help feed 22 million children who relied on school meals, as well as delivering food boxes to food banks across the country.


About Jennifer Newell

Jennifer began writing about poker while working at the World Poker Tour in the mid-2000s. Since then, her freelance writing career has taken her from Los Angeles to Las Vegas and back to her hometown of St. Louis, where she now lives with her two dogs. She continues to follow the poker world as she also launches a new subscription box company and finishes her first novel. Jennifer has written for numerous publications including and has followed the US poker and gaming market closely for the last 15 years. Follow Jen on Twitter

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