Plagued by sketchy weather in recent years, the Emerald Coast Poker Run—a collaborative effort between the Florida Powerboat Club and the Emerald Coast Foundation—saw a 150-plus-boat turnout under mostly blue skies last weekend in Destin, Fla. FPC President Stu Jones ended his “Summer Poker Run” tour (read the upcoming story on Tuesday, Sept. 4 on offshoreonly.com) to arrive in Destin several days before the event to finalize dockage and other arrangements.
More than 150 boats were registered for last weekend’s Emerald Coast Poker Run. Photos courtesy/copyright Florida Powerboat Club
“We had a good event,” Jones said. “We still struggle with Emerald Coast being so close to the Lake of the Ozarks Shootout weekend, but we had 105 boats registered through the club and another 50 boats registered locally in the ‘Ruby class.’ And there had to be 60 to 80 non-registered boats from other states running the course, so we’re looking at easily more than 200 boats running around the course that day. We had a strong law enforcement presence, as well as five or six fire departments on paid active duty for safety.”
While Jones said the final numbers are not yet in, he estimated that the event raised $160,000 to $170,000 for Emerald Coast Foundation charities. Early in the week before the event, his greatest concern was securing dockage for FPC members.
“Dockage always has been the biggest challenge for our Emerald Coast event,” he said. “But we overcame a few hurdles and were able to secure a good amount of dock space.”