Poker Run returning to Sault Ste. Marie waterfront
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SAULT STE. MARIE, ONTARIO July 20, 2018 (LSN) They’re baaaa-aaaack! Dozens of high-octane speed boats are returning to the Sault Ste. Marie shoreline this summer. The third-annual Power Boating Canada/Poker Runs America CAN/AM President’s Cup VIP Poker Run is taking place July 27 to 29. This year’s event is slated to be the biggest yet, with many new and returning performance boats scheduled to take part in the weekend waterfront festivities.
This year’s Poker Run is Mardi Gras-themed. When taking part in the event, the public is encouraged to dress up in masks and beads to join the fun. The agenda includes the following:
- Friday, July 27: Starting in the early-afternoon, the boats will begin launching at Bellevue Marina on Pine Street and making their way to the downtown Roberta Bondar Marina & Pavilion. The public is invited to come down to see the spectacular vessels at the docks and meet the drivers.
- Saturday, July 28: On Poker Run day, the opening ceremony is taking place at 9:30 a.m. at the Bondar Marina. Local talent Timothy Murphy will be singing the Canadian and American national anthems. Spectators can feel the thunder at 10 a.m. when the boats start their engines. From there, the participants will make their way to the water staging area at the Parks Canada Sault Ste. Marie Canal National Historic Site. At 10:30 a.m., the vessels will begin departing two at a time and be on-plane as they start the run on the river along the Boardwalk. With arrival times approximate, the route includes stops at: St. Joseph Island Bridge (11:30 a.m.), Hilton Beach Marina (lunch from 11:45 a.m. to 2 p.m.), Thessalon Municipal Marina (2:40 p.m.) and Richards Landing (3:15 p.m.). From there, the boats will make their way back to their last stop at the Bondar Marina. At each location, the vessels collect a card and, when they return to Sault Ste. Marie, the best poker hand wins.
- Sunday, July 29: From 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., the public has an opportunity to take a Ride of a Lifetime on the St. Mary’s River aboard one of the high-speed race boats. The cost is $100, with all money going to Big Brothers Big Sisters Sault Ste. Marie. There are a limited number of tickets available. To reserve a spot in advance, visit www.ssmpokerrun.com. If space permits, citizens can book in-person the day-of.
The CAN/AM President’s Cup VIP Poker Run was secured by – and is being facilitated by – Tourism Sault Ste. Marie, a division of the Sault Ste. Marie Economic Development Corporation, in partnership with Poker Runs Inc. In its visitor-attraction efforts, Tourism Sault Ste. Marie works to draw and support major sports tournaments, conferences and special events. The primary goal is to generate visitor spending for the local economy.
“For the Poker Run, not only does the event attract tourists, it also allows us to promote the recreational boating opportunities in the Sault area and North Shore of Lake Huron,” said Alana Kenopic, Manager of Sport Tourism & Special Events for Tourism Sault Ste. Marie. “Previous Poker Runs generated marketing videos, along with magazine articles and online feature stories. We’re excited to carry this momentum forward and continue to promote our community as a first-rate boating destination.”
To learn more about the 2018 CAN/AM President’s Cup VIP Poker Run, including route maps, volunteer opportunities and other information, visit www.ssmpokerrun.com.
To participate in the Poker Run, please register your boat and crew at www.pokerrunsamerica.com, www.powerboating.com or call the Poker Run hotline at 1-800-354-9145 ext. 252.
PHOTO: High-performance race boats speeding along the St. Mary’s River during the 2016 CAN/AM President’s Cup VIP Poker Run.