Drivers start your engines! Pilots throttle up and boat captains rev your motors!!! With the Florida Powerboat Club’s Second Annual Key West Air, Land & Sea Poker Run just days away, entrants are preparing for one of the most exciting and scenic events around! The event runs May 15th to 17th in Key West.
This amazing Poker Run is a bit different than most because it’s open to boats, cars, motorcycles, and airplanes. Participants have to register but don’t have to be members of the Florida Powerboat Club (FPC) to enjoy this fun event, according to organizer Stu Jones, FPC president. Boats Direct USA will be showing off a gorgeous 36 Deep Impact, a 39 Contender ST, a 28 Nautic Star and the stunning orange and blue Nortech 527 belonging to Boats Direct USA owners Mark and Eileen Fischer. Also on exhibit from Off Lease Only will be a luxurious pre-owned Ferrari, a pre-owned Bentley and a pre-owned Rolls Royce all with prices thousands below retail! The watercraft and cars will be on display at the Poker Run Village at the Conch Republic Seafood Co., at 631 Green Street, in Key West.
“It’s an end to the South Florida Season,” Jones said. “We have everything at this Poker Run. You can drive a car, ride a motorcycle, fly an airplane or feel the warm breeze in your face on a boat. This year we have a really good variety of cars – classic cars from the 50’s to current high line models from Off Lease Only.”
So far, approximately 10 boats, 15 cars, and five airplanes have registered to participate, Jones said. Registrants include two amphibious planes and a Cirrus aircraft, known for its built-in parachute. The land, air and sea extravaganza is also a huge birthday bash for Boats Direct USA/OffLeaseOnly owner Mark Fischer, whose actual birthday is May 18th.
Jones isn’t expecting crowds because about 80 percent of the FPC members are seasonal, out-of-state boaters who pack up and head north about this time of year. A few of the Poker Run entrants are Canadians who are taking their boats for one last run before heading north to Ontario before Florida’s temperatures get too steamy.
“We are very tourism-driven,” Jones noted.
The Land, Air & Sea Poker Run kicks off on Friday, May 15th with five checkpoints en route to Key West: Key Largo, Islamorada, Marathon, Big Pine Key and Key West. The Poker Run ends at the Conch Republic Seafood Co.
The popular Poker Run Village will include displays of all the boats and cars that participated in the event, as well as an array of stunning boats and extreme luxury cars from Boats Direct USA and Off Lease Only.
Drivers who participate in the event will enjoy a scenic 300-mile round trip drive from Miami to Key West. Participating boats will embark from the Grove Harbor Marina in Coconut Grove. OffLeaseOnly Miami is going to be the starting point for all motorists!
“It’s not a big event. It’s just a unique event,” Jones said. “We use this event to produce an episode of television that will be broadcast on Sun Sports. The TV coverage primarily shows us cruising through the scenic Florida Keys, gathering cards at the checkpoints, and at our destination at the Poker Run Village.”
The idea is to highlight the incredible boating in the Florida Keys and promote the area – through the TV coverage, as a wonderful place to enjoy your powerboat with the Florida Powerboat Club, Jones said.
Sight-seeing at the Poker Run Village is one of the most popular activities, Jones said.
“A lot of people follow our events and people are welcome to come to the Poker Run Village,” Jones said. “There is no membership required for this event . You don’t have to join the club.”
Jones himself will be experiencing all modes of transportation in his trip south as he films the show! He plans to drive his motor-coach down to Key West ahead of time, for use as his headquarters during the weekend event.
Then, on May 15th, he will travel by boat from Miami to Key Largo, then drive from Key Largo to Marathon in a stunning powder blue 1966 Cadillac. In Marathon, he will take a spin in one of the participating amphibious aircraft. Once grounded, he will ride his custom 1993 Harley Davidson Fat Boy down the rest of the way to Key West.
A good time is expected to be had by all!
The FPC’s Key West Poker Run is in its second year and Jones is hoping more and more car and boat enthusiasts will join in the fun. Cars can park free at the Key West Poker Run Village during the event and participants will have a chance at $5,000 worth of prizes throughout the weekend, Jones noted.
Participants must register with the Florida Powerboat Club ahead online.
Registration for a motorbike with one rider is $195; Registration is $395 per car and $595 per boat or yacht.
The entire Poker Run event will be taped and aired on Sun Sports TV, Jones said.
Boats Direct USA is the exclusive dealer for Deep Impact, BlackWater Boats and Ocean Hawk. With over 100 new and used boats for sale, it’s never been a better time to schedule your sea trial. For more information, call 866-377-5403 toll-free or visit the Boats Direct USA showroom at Mile Marker 98.