Sand Hollow’s 8th annual ‘Poker Run’ brings record crowds

Participation doubled previous years' turnout Saturday at the eighth annual Poker Run at Sand Hollow State Park, Hurricane, Utah, Oct. 29, 2016 | Photo courtesy of Stephen Studebaker, St. George News

HURRICANE — Sand Hollow State Park held its eighth annual “Poker Run” Saturday, bringing hundreds of people out for the park’s own organized event aimed at bringing people together to have fun and become familiar with what the park has to offer.

Participants set out to complete the eigth annual Poker Run at Sand Hollow State Park Saturday, Hurricane, Utah, Oct. 29, 2016 | Photo courtesy of Stephen Studebaker, St. George News
Participants set out to complete the eigth annual Poker Run at Sand Hollow State Park Saturday, Hurricane, Utah, Oct. 29, 2016 | Photo courtesy of Stephen Studebaker, St. George News

The shores of the reservoir were alight with outdoor enthusiasts, first for the Poker Run and then for an array of festivities including a Halloween costume contest, a mystery rover site, a raffle contest and other children’s’ activities.

“We had 177 visitors signed up for the poker run this year, twice as many as last year,” park ranger and assistant manager Stephen Studebaker said.

For the poker run, participants were given different GPS coordinates on Sand Mountain that both served as checkpoints and introduced them to the mountain, one of the park’s premier attractions.

The top 10 winners were announced midday and awarded prizes, with the top three receiving higher awards and a grand prize.

Many prizes were awarded throughout the day as well so nearly everybody was able to win something.

Hundreds of items were donated by businesses throughout Washington County, Studebaker said, each being announced during the awards ceremony giving them favorable exposure. The park also donated hats, T-shirts and other items to visitors during the activities.

The only charge for participants was the standard park entrance fee, everything else was free.

Sand Hollow State Park is the premier spot for events, Studebaker said. Numerous agencies and organizations hold fundraisers and training activities there every month. So it was that state park manager Laura Melling came up with the idea of the park putting on its own affair to bring people together “just to have fun” at an event exclusive to Sand Hollow.

“It also increases exposure and brings guests that may have never visited Sand Hollow,” Studebaker said.

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Email: cblowers@stgnews.com

Twitter: @STGnews

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2016, all rights reserved.

 

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