Editor's Note: Below is a copy of the Bylaws of the Southwestern Connecticut Poker Association SWCPA), not including information specific to individual members, of no interest to the general public or of questionable taste. Those interested in forming their own poker groups may find such a document to be a useful starting point. The picture directly below is our Clubhouse in Norwalk, Connecticut, which was carved out of an old garage in order that we might have a conveniently located, semi-permanent site to play year-round.

Southwestern Connecticut Poker Association

Rules and Bylaws

Rev. S (07/02/2002 )

1.         The game shall take place one Friday per month at 6:30 p.m. (see Table below). If there are enough players present (a minimum of five denotes a quorum) to begin play at 6:30 or thereafter, any player arriving once play has begun shall be subject to a $1.00 late fee, which shall be deposited into the pot of the first game in which that player is a participant (this levy shall be in addition to his regular ante).

2.         The date and location of the next month’s game are to be decided upon by the Host at the close of the evening, in conjunction with those players present. He may opt to host the game himself or request a default to the semi-permanent site in Norwalk, hereinafter referred to as “The Clubhouse.”

3.         The Host of the next game shall contact any members not present to alert them as to the date and location of said game as quickly as is feasible.

4.         The Host of the game is responsible for contacting participants by phone and/or by e-mail on Monday or, at the latest, Tuesday of the week of the game. In addition, the Host is responsible for having a current copy of The Bylaws available to settle disputes. The Host shall also have enough cash on hand to pay for the food, unless he has hosted the game himself or has brought his own food to The Clubhouse.

5.         New business shall only be introduced prior to the start of the first deal or during the dinner break. Passage of a motion to amend the Bylaws requires a majority (better than 50 percent) of the players present. For voting purposes, six members represent a quorum; hence, passage requires four aye votes.

6.         The first dealer of the night is determined by the high card on a one-card preliminary deal conducted by the Host.

7.         The deal always moves clockwise, and the cards are dealt clockwise. Cards are shuffled by the person ahead (to the left) of the dealer and cut by the person behind (to the right) of the dealer.

8.         When there are eight players present, the cards are dealt by the person ahead (to the left) of the person who calls the game. This person also shuffles, but does not play, except in the cases of games for which there are sufficient cards for eight players, such as Sixes, guts, Five-card Stud or One-Three-One.

9.         The maximum number of raises is three, except when more are agreed to by all of the players still in the game.

10.     At 11:00, the deal goes once around the table. (Refer to Table below.) After this, there is a final hand, which is called by the night’s big loser, as determined by a rough, preliminary assessment of everyone’s cash situation. Although the traditional game for this hand is Screw Your Neighbor Grandé (one pile each of $5.00), this is not a requirement — this final game shall always be a “loser’s choice.”

11.     Until 10:00 p.m., the limit for bets is 75 cents. Prior to 10:00, the limit for antes is 25 cents. From 10:00 to closing, the ante limit is 50 cents, and the limit for bets is $1.00. (Refer to Table below for exceptions.)

12.     In deference to the “purists” (both of them), for the first hour of the night (or until 7:30 p.m., whichever is later), there shall be no “junk games.” Calls are strictly limited to the following: Five-card Stud; Seven-card Stud; One-Three-One; Five-card Draw, which may include Jacks or Better, Progressive and/or Trips to Win; and, by special dispensation, Texas Hold ’em and Omaha. There shall be no wild cards, power games, splitting of the pot, Roll Your Own or any other nonstandard forms of poker (see Table below).

13.     Prior to 10:00 p.m., there are four forbidden games: Meatloaf, Acey-Deucey, Guillotine and Drops. (See Table below.)

14.     The official SWCPA Meatloaf rules stipulate that the winner of the game needs to have two out of three of the following: high hand, high spade in the hole or low spade in the hole. (By majority acclamation, “The Loaf” is the best game we play.)

15.     All hands are what they are called by their owners. If a player makes an error in calling his hand, he has until the pot is physically taken to correct himself; however, no one may help him to do so. Once the pot is actually taken, it is the obligation of all present to abuse the offending party for his stupidity.

16.     In any game in which two players are exactly tied, a natural hand takes precedence over one that includes one or more wild cards. If this rule still does not yield a winner, the players split the pot (this includes Guts and 727).

17.     In Follow the Queen, if the last card up is a queen, there is no wild card.

18.     In Baseball and Night Baseball, the cost of buying an extra card with a four is 50 cents, unless otherwise specified by the dealer prior to the start of the game. An acceptable variation is that the extra card may be bought for 50 cents up and for $1.00 down.

19.     In the Power form of Richard Petty, crash victims are out of the game only for the duration of the hand in which they have crashed. Should the hand be called off, they are back in the next hand without penalty. Those who have dropped out voluntarily, prematurely and in an effeminate manner at any point during the game are out of the game permanently.

20.     In forming straights, the ace may be used as high or low; however, there are no wraparound straights, e.g., king-ace-deuce-trey-four.

21.     In draw poker, when taking four cards with an ace, a wild card cannot be used as an ace.

22.     The game must remain exactly as it is called at the start, unless everyone at the table agrees to change a rule in order to expedite completion.

23.    Regardless of its offensiveness, flatulence is never an excuse for delay of the game. Anyone who leaves the table during such an event is adjudged to have thrown in his cards and shall forfeit his right to the pot or to any portion thereof.

Game Schedule With Parameters


-------------------------- Time Period -------------------------


6:30 – 7:30 (First Hour)

7:30 – 10:00

10:00 – Closing

Ante Limit




Bet Limit




Raise Limit



(waived after
11:00 p.m.)

Games Allowed

Five-card Stud, Seven-Card Stud,
1-3-1, Five-Card Draw
(Jacks or Better and/or
Trips to Win), Texas Hold 'em, and Omaha

Anything, Except Meatloaf, Acey-Deucey,
Guillotine and Drops


* Exceptions: Drops and Screw Your Neighbor, for which the ante can be up to $1.00 and three piles of $1.00, respectively.

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