Sitting behind the desk in his office for the first time in three weeks, Stu Jones of the Florida Powerboat Club exhaled deeply. Between the 2016 Miami International Boat Show, which included the club’s annual Friday night party—at a new venue this year—and the 21st annual poker run that followed it, the Pompano, Fla.-based club’s founder and president had been running flat out since early January. Now, at least until the editor of Powerboating In Paradise, the FPC’s magazine, tracked him down to review photos for the upcoming issue, he had a few minutes to reflect on the run.
For sure, Jones had his challenges this year as an organizer. They included participant departures from multiple locations before the fleet gathered in the waters off Coconut Grove, a separate run to the Keys on the same weekend for MTI catamaran and center consoles owners, and Jones’ own Winter Poker Run the month prior, which likely pulled a few boats from the boat show event fleet.
But the biggest challenge of all for the longtime poker run organizer and his team was that the famed Tiki Bar at the Post Card Inn—the host venue—on Islamorada was closed for renovation. Yeah, it’s just a tiki bar, but it’s served as the central social setting and meeting location since Islamorada became the run’s destination more than 15 years ago.
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