This weekend’s Hartwell Lake Poker Run in South Carolina has been rescheduled for July 11-13 because of severe weather from a tropical storm.
Organizers made the decision after the forecast called for hail, strong winds and lots of rain. It’s a forecast that proved true with widespread rain hitting the region on Friday.
“On Wednesday we were looking at the forecast and they were predicting rain, hail and winds,” said Laurie Ashley, executive director of Meals on Wheels in Anderson County, which organizes the poker run. “Within 15 minutes of seeing the forecast, I had three different people call me and ask what we were going to do.”
Ashley said 150 boats were registered for the June 7-8 run and the registration will automatically move to July 11-13. Online registration for the new dates will remain open until July 7. Boats can register onsite at the poker run. The $85 entry fee ($100 for late entrants) includes a T-shirt and a poker hand.
The Harwell Lake Poker Run is the largest fundraiser for the organization, which provides meals to people who are homebound, elderly or disabled and live alone or with another person that is disabled. The group serves 400 people a day with a waiting list of more than 200 people.
This year’s poker run kicks off on Thursday, July 11, with a welcome party and boat showcase at Palmetto Distillery in downtown Anderson. On Friday, organizers are doing a boat fun run/raft up and later that evening there is a live auction benefiting Meals on Wheels and a kickoff party.
Saturday’s poker run will last most of the day with a “Poker is a Royal Flush” Olympics at Big Water Marina featuring stick horse races, hula hoop competitions and balloon tossing. The night closes with an after-event party.
Ashley hopes the delay will allow a few more boats to register for the poker run, bringing much-needed money to the nonprofit organization.
For more information or to register for the Hartwell Lake Poker Run, visit hartwelllakepokerrun.com.