By Jonas Gagnon
This year’s poker ride was one of the most successful in the event’s history.
“It was the biggest turn out for selling (poker) hands,” said Wayne Moll, president of the Fort St. James Snowmobile Club.
A total of 405 poker hands were sold for the event which was a significant jump in hands. Previously the highest number of hands sold at the Poker Ride was 325.
With people doubling up on snowmobiles, and riders buying more than one hand the actual snowmobile count was lower than the hands count. Organizers estimate anywhere between 250 to 285 actual snowmobiles made their way out to the ride.
Besides selling a record breaking number of hands the event was also successful in drawing people from all over the region.
“We got people from Prince George, Burns Lake, Stoney Plain, Vanderhoof and Fraser Lake,” said Moll.
Though the collection of cards to complete a poker hand was the key to the event, there was a plethora of draws at the clubhouse for everything from a chainsaw to a helicopter ride, along with a small concession to warm up the riders with coffee and hot chocolate when they got back.
The event was a fundraiser for the snowmobile club, the proceeds of which goes to paying for the fuel and up keep for the machines that keep the trails groomed. The club keeps 256 km of trails groomed throughout the winter for snowmobilers.
The poker ride also doubled as a membership drive, as the organization hopes to lure in younger members.
“We are really looking to getting some younger people out here” said Moll.
The average age of the senior members in the club keeps creeping up, with one of their groomers still at it after turning 80.
With 54 memberships sold the club saw some success in bringing in new people as well.
Poker Ride Results
First. Ashden Scheper 4
Second. Cullen James.
Flush King high.
Third. Grant Mortenson
Flush Queen high
4th. Donna Leslie.
Flush Nine high.
5th. Alicia MacDougall
3 Aces Nine high