Even though this year’s Boyne Thunder Poker Run, which was scheduled to take place later this week in beautiful Northern Michigan, was cancelled due to concerns surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, the event’s generous supporters and participants stepped up in a big way to make sure that the charities that benefit from what was supposed to be the 17th annual affair weren’t left empty-handed.
Many of those who signed up for the 2020 Boyne Thunder Poker Run in Northern Michigan, which was cancelled in late April, donated their registration and sponsorship fees to the event and its charities. Photo by Pete Boden/Shoot 2 Thrill Pix
According to Bob Alger, a steadfast member of the poker run organizing committee, and Kelsie King-Duff, executive director of Boyne City Main Street, more than $50,000 is going to be donated to the two longstanding beneficiaries of the Boyne Thunder Poker Run, Camp Quality and Challenge Mountain.
“I really can’t believe we’re going to be able to give away that much money this year despite having to cancel the poker run,” said Alger, who was disappointed he didn’t get to see out his final year as chairman of the Boyne Thunder committee. “I thought we’d have some companies and boaters donate their sponsorship and registration money back to the event, but I had no idea we’d have such strong support. It just goes to show how passionate the people who support this event are about the beneficiaries.
“We kind of already knew how generous the poker run community is, and this just emphasizes that,” he continued. “It’s pretty incredible in my opinion. We decided not to roll over entries for next year but rather offer a full refund to participants and sponsors with a disclaimer that the event would appreciate any donations they would like to make.”
In total, according to King-Duff, the more than $50,000 in donations came from 43 different sponsors and participants. In all, 112 boats were registered when the poker run was called off in late April.
Despite the event being cancelled, Alger said there have been rumblings that many boaters are still coming to town “to shred Lake Charlevoix and Lake Michigan” later this week.
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