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Inside SOTW Mag: Boyne Thunders Back

Boyne Thunder first-timers Chris and Shelby Mattingly, who own a 2008 Outerlimits Offshore Powerboats 46 Limited sportboat powered by twin Mercury Racing 1075SCi engines, were among the last people to register for the 18th annual event based out of Boyne City, Mich. But when the 2022 event rolls around, they’re likely to be among the first—that’s how delighted the Elizabethtown, Ky., couple was with the mid- summer happening in Northern Michigan.

A casualty of pandemic event cancellation, the Boyne Thunder Poker Run returned in fine style. Photo by Pete Boden copyright Shoot 2 Thrill Pix.

“It was amazing—I will never miss another one,” said Shelby Mattingly, who recently started the Boat Babes Official apparel line. “The water was beautiful and the people were the friendliest we’ve ever met. The whole community was so welcoming.

“Everything about it was top-notch,” she added. “It’s comparable to the Key West Poker Run.”

Mattingly paused to laugh. “I was actually a little afraid to go there based on the big water I saw in some of the pictures from 2019,” she said. “I was glad to be in our 46. But the whole thing was phenomenal.”

Like the Mattinglys, Jack and Cara Gladke of Upstate New York were Boyne Thunder newbies this year and they brought their Donzi Marine 38 ZRC sportboat called Red Baron to tackle the run. Also like their fellow first-timers from the Bluegrass State, they’ll be back.

Boyne Thunder left them equally spellbound.

“It’s the best event I’ve ever been to,” said Jack Gladke, who also hauled his 38-footer to the Kuttawa Cannonball Run in Kentucky in June. “Everything about it is organized and efficient. The water was perfect—an absolutely calm day for Lake Michigan. It was just an awesome experience.”

To enjoy the complete 2021 Boyne Thunder Poker Run and more, subscribe to Speed On The Water digital magazine.