To just say the Lanier Poker Run was a great event would be a huge understatement. TheLanier Partners who put on this event to support Camp Sunshine and other charities are to be so heartily commended for an incredible job. John Woodruff who many of us know as the owner of the fabulous 48 MTI “WINDSHIP” who presided over the event was a wonderful and accommodating host to everyone. If you weren’t there you missed a number of incredible features including at total of 275 boats at final registration. $280,000 was raised for the partner charities.
Not stopping with the money raised, the Great Venue, Card Stops, the Laser Light Show, Fireworks made the event golden. The variety of boats and wonderful people made it even more special. Special commendations have to be given to organizers for putting on a safe event with a good start procedure as well.
This Powerboating Event is one that I have never done before and don’t intend to miss again. We had non-stop fun at this amazing event and it’s difficult to describe the joy. All three poker run winners, 1st Place Jarrett Garlin with the $5,000 prize, 2nd Place Kenny Armstrong with the $2500 prize, and 3rd Place Mitch Blalock $1000 prize, returned their winning back to the charity. In fact every single poker hand prize ever won at this event has gone back to Camp Sunshine. The atmosphere, support and touch of the event were possibly felt no stronger by anyone than fellow poker runner and MTI owner Kenny Armstrong. Kenny said he was so moved by the work of the charity and what Camp Sunshine does for young cancer patients he had to do more. On Friday night Kenny gave $50,000.00 to the event. This type of generous giving was felt all over and felt hard. The entire event was so much more than fiberglass and iron it was truly a like minded community united for a cause.
Remarkable was the variety of boats. From the exotic 48 MTI’s of John Woodruff and Kenny Armstrong and the 46 Skater of Dan DeSantis to small open runabouts and pontoon boats this event was about Powerboating and raising money for charities. I was completely taken back by the generosity of the community and how friendly and appreciative everyone was.
To say people were nice and welcoming does not come close either. At no other boating event have so many people gone out of their way to come up to us and tell us how thankful they were that we took the time to come to Lake Lanier and how appreciative they all were. The venue at Lake Lanier Islands Resort was equally as impressive. The grounds, the staff, the accommodations, and the attitudes were all superb. On the docks was a blast and a big thanks to our local boating friend John O’Neill for getting us extra slips at the last minute.