1st Lake Fest canoe-kayak-SUP poker run deemed a success

CULVER — The first annual Canoe, Kayak.& SUP Poker Run was a great success, according to co-organizer Kathy Clark, director of the Lake Maxinkuckee Environmental Council.
In all, 41 people signed up to participate, bringing their favorite self-propelled watercraft for some fun competition with friends, family and neighbors, including one participant’s handmade, wooden kayak.
Dawn Brockey — who participated with husband Larry — attened in “a little summer dress and hat,” says Clark, aiming to “fool the competition into thinking they weren’t taking the poker run seriously... but she was really wearing her swim suit hidden under the dress. They paddled their double kayak on the long route and Larry said they had a blast.”
The shortest route left from the park and included stops at the Harbor Condos — where Bill and Cheryl Rhodes handed out cards — and on to the Semler family pier, followed by Lt. Cmd. Barnes’ pier where Allen Chesser was stationed, with the last stop at Suzanne King’s home.
This route’s winners were: First place, Jennifer Levett SUP; second place, Elizabeth Levett; and third place, Amy Levett.
Clark notes the Semler family “obviously played fair when handing out cards, because the only other two participating on this route were Semlers!”
Route two had a full house (no pun intended), with initial stop being the King home; then Hank and Marshia Bilsland’s pier, where they handled the crowds; next came Verl Shaffer’s pier, manned by Gary Schaffer and his son Nolan; then the Brantingham pier manned by Dan Osborn; and holding the last cards was Jane Grund, stationed at the Spiece pier.
The winner of this 2.25-mile route was James Schuller in first; Richard Matkovich taking second; and Eric Clark following in third place.
“Everyone looked like a winner,” adds Clark, “if the smiles on their faces were any indication!”