Photos: Friends and family celebrate Jesse James Sylvia

Photos: Friends and family celebrate Jesse James Sylvia

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The family: sisters Nica and Randi, father Wayne, Jesse, and his mother Marlene DiStefano.

Jesse Sylvia’s extended family and many Island friends gathered at The Ritz Cafe Monday night to welcome him back home, and celebrate his second place finish in the World Series of Poker this past October.

A West Tisbury native, Mr. Sylvia, 26, won $5.3 million in the tournament, which began with more than 6,000 players.

Some of the large contingent of Martha’s Vineyard residents who traveled to Las Vegas to cheer on Mr. Sylvia during the riveting poker game were on hand at The Ritz.

It was a suitable venue. During a final table that took nearly 12 hours to play 399 hands, the Island cheering section got creative. At one point, the crowd thought of a way, though somewhat prematurely, to spend some of Mr. Sylvia’s winnings. They shouted in unison “Let’s buy The Ritz, let’s buy The Ritz.”

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