By Breeana Greenberg
The Dana Point Boaters Association will put on its inaugural Poker Run and Fall Fiesta Party this Saturday, Oct. 15. The Poker Run will take place from 9:30-11 a.m. in the Dana Point Harbor, with the Fall Fiesta taking place from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. at the Dana Point Woman’s Club Community House.
During the Poker Run, participants will go around the harbor, in up to five different boats, and choose an envelope with poker cards enclosed. At the Fiesta, participants of the Poker Run will be able to reveal their cards for a chance to win prizes for best or worst hand.
Proceeds from the event will support the Dana Point Boaters Association’s charitable partners, including the Dana Point Sea Scouts. The Mariners 936 Sea Scouts is a boating program that offers youth the chance to learn about sailing, the environment and safety on the water.
“A part of the donations will go to the Boaters Association, because we do run this organization as a nonprofit, and to support our legal funds,” Boaters Association Secretary Victoria Winters said. “We’re always, constantly reaching out to different groups to see where we can be of service.”
The Dana Point Boaters Association’s mission is to “advocate on behalf of boaters, really all boaters, but particularly boaters in Orange County and boaters that choose to call the Dana Point Harbor their home,” Winters said.
“We like to give information about safety issues, about upcoming events that are relevant to boaters,” Winters continued. “We also are advocating for boaters on behalf of their rights. Boaters are voters, and we like to get that message out that they should participate—and it’s their duty to participate—in the community at large and also to enjoy being recreational boaters.”
Acknowledging the class-action lawsuit filed a year ago against the Dana Point Harbor Partners, which is overseeing revitalization of the harbor, Winters said the Boaters Association is hoping the event will help boost morale.
“In the spirit of having fun and helping the boaters understand that, yes, we are in this lawsuit, we talk about a lot of different things—education for the youth, conditions of how the sea lions are affecting everybody and all the animals around—we decided we’re going to have some fun,” Winters said. “It’s going to be a lot of fun and informative. It’s a good reason to get together to unite for sheer pleasure of enjoying your boat and having a good time.”
During the Poker Run, participants can decorate their dinghy, kayak or paddleboard for a chance to receive a prize for best decorated. At the Fall Fiesta, the Boaters Association encourages attendees to dress festively for a chance to win best dressed.
The fiesta will feature live music, food, drinks, silent auctions, raffles and games, as well as a guest speaker discussing animal conservation.
Tickets cost $30 per person per hand for the Poker Run and range from $60 and $75 for the lunch and drinks at the Fiesta. Those interested in purchasing a ticket can visit the Dana Point Boaters Association website at danapointboaters.org for more information.
Whether they are a boater, interested in boating, or just looking for a fun event that supports charitable causes, Winters said she hopes the community at large joins the Dana Point Boaters Association to meet new people and enjoy the Poker Run and Fall Fiesta.
Breeana Greenberg is the city reporter for the Dana Point Times. She graduated from Chapman University with a bachelor of arts degree in English. Before joining Picket Fence Media, she worked as a freelance reporter with the Laguna Beach Independent. Breeana can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org