Poker run helps make dreams come true

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First Posted: 9/9/2014

The bikers who enter the run to help special needs children travel to Disney World no doubt have a big heart, but they just might find the King of Hearts when they participate. That’s because the benefit is a bike and poker run in which the bikers pick from a deck of cards at each stop along the way.

The event will begin at 11 a.m. at Banko’s Restaurant, Route 11, West Nanticoke. Registration is at 10 a.m. The proceeds from the ride will go toward funding a trip for five special needs children, ranging in age from 9 to 13, attending a life skills class at Northeast Area Elementary School.

Tom Adams, parent of one of the students, a daughter, 13, who has cerebral palsy, is helping organize the trip. “This class has no opportunity to ever visit Disney World,” he said. “We want to make this happen for them.”

The ride has four stops along its route. After beginning at Banko’s, the bikers will proceed to Jake’s Outpost, Shickshinny, then travel to the Hunlock Creek Tavern and Morgan Hills, Hunlock Creek, with the final destination being the Shickshinny American Legion. At each stop, the riders take a card from a deck of regular playing cards. That card is then recorded at each stop. The biker who has the highest hand receives half the pot from the proceeds of the race.

“We thought that was more fun than just getting on a bike for an hour long ride and then drive and come back,” Adams said. “Along the way, we will be helping four other businesses, who will be providing hot dogs, wings and pizza for the riders at each stop.”

The big finish at the American Legion will be a pig roast at 4 p.m. with the Band Oz performing from 5 to 9 p.m.

Aside from pork, the meal will include a variety of salads, dessert, beer and soda. The event will also include the opportunity to win from a selection of baskets being raffled and face painting for the children.

Other fundraisers have taken place during the year to help the group reach its goal of funding a seven day, six night stay at Disney World, tentatively scheduled for March 1 through 7, 2015. The parents have the permission of the school district to take the children to Florida during the school year and have the trip be counted toward their educational curriculum provided they raise the money themselves.

The students were not told of the possible trip to Disney in the event that it may not happen if the group doesn’t reach its monetary goal. But Adams promises they will be told in a big way. He plans to have someone dressed like a princess from the Disney film “Frozen” make a presentation to the class and then announce she will see them again when they visit her at Disney World.

Those not able to attend the bike and poker run, but who would still like to help the children be able to visit Disney, can send donations to the Mocanaqua Branch of PNC Bank in care of the NWA Life Skills Disney Trip.