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Inside SOTW Mag: Poker Run Glädje

Let’s play a numbers game. With a population of approximately 10 million people, Sweden has six to seven poker runs a year. Roughly the same geographic size as the Scandinavian country but with four times the population, California has two poker runs a year. About one-third the geographic size of Sweden but with double the population, Florida has six to eight poker runs a year.


Deep in the heart of Sweden, the poker running is a joyful as it gets.

So why would a reporter from Northern California go to Sweden to check out the poker run scene and attend a couple of events? A better question is: Why wouldn’t he?

The he, of course, is me and until Helmich Hillen, a Netherlands-based owner of a 27-foot Checkmate sportboat and an avowed poker run fanatic, reached out I didn’t know anything about Sweden’s vibrant poker-run scene, much less would have considered a 10-day trip in the middle of August to experience it. So in no small way I have Hillen to thank for this story.

Allow me to tell it to you.

To read the full story, click the download link for the PDF of the July/August 2018 Speed On The Water magazine, and please share any feedback with us below, via email or on social media.