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- June 2009
Poker for Pups
By: Emily Pogue, Photography By: Derek Hieb
There is an old adage that “the best is yet to come” and in the case of a local fundraising poker run, it couldn’t be more true. Pulling out all the stops for their 10th Annual Boxers ‘n Bikers Poker Run, the Northern Plains Boxer Rescue committee will offer an entertaining opportunity to raise funds for a “good paws.” And it doesn’t hurt that there will be two $500 best hand winners at the end of the night.
The funds are being raised for Northern Plains Boxer Rescue, an area rescue that is doing hard work to heal pups and place them with their forever homes. Co-founders Donna and Clint Tucker initially started the rescue back in 1997 under Clay County Boxer Rescue, then South Dakota Boxer Rescue. As their reach grew, so did the need for a name change. Because they rescue and adopt to five surrounding states, they decided on Northern Plains Boxer Rescue (NPBR) and have been doing incredible work for the breed for over 20 years. Before placement happens, however, is where the real money is needed.
Each dog that comes in needs to be medically cleared before they go to an adoptive home. Often that means getting the dogs spayed or neutered, microchipped, shots and any other procedure which is needed to deem them healthy. That can mean extensive testing and intervention to make sure even the most medically fragile of dogs gets the care they desperately need. NPBR does not cut costs on medical needs.
“Fundraising is how we sustain. If we don’t fundraise, we cannot continue to run as an organization and continue to bring in more wiggle butts in need of rescue,” explains Donna.
Bob Evans has been the creator and chair of the poker for the last 10 years, raising well over $40,000 for NPBR. Bob and co-chair Erik Swan are raising the bar for this year’s run. Organizers have added two Paramount party buses, incredible t-shirts, and a steak sandwich stop as incentive to join in the festivities. There will also be a silent auction with items such as a wall hanging from J&L Harley, a quilt of t-shirts from the last 10 years of the poker run, a package for a weekend in Deadwood, as well as Grand Falls Casino to mention a few. To keep with the theme of “no holds barred,” there will also be $5 raffle tickets for a chance to win a mini motorbike. And although you don’t have to be present to win, we’re guessing there’s too much fun in store to stop short.
Registration will start at J&L Harley-Davidson at 2601 W. 60th St. at 10:30 on Saturday, June 15th. Cost for registrants is $20. For those that want to enjoy the run without the risk of driving, party buses will be free of charge to entrants. But hurry; because there are a limited number of seats, you’ll need to preregister with Eric at 605-929-9364. Organizers hope that this will allow the event to grow and give a unique spin on the traditional modes of transportation.
In addition to cool transportation options, the organizers have created an incredible t-shirt to commemorate the event that can be purchased pre-sale for $20.
As with any poker run, there will be multiple stops along a route and at each stop there will be multiple boxers to meet that will be looking for their forever home.
After departing from J&L, run participants will make a stop at Dell Rapids City Park where they can enjoy a ribeye steak sandwich, chips, beans, and water for $10. The next stops include Steve's Bar in Trent, SD; Stone Wall, in Jasper, MN; Bloodrun in Larchwood, IA; and Grand Falls Casino, also in Larchwood. The final stop will be at Bar Code at 4200 N. Cliff Ave. in Sioux Falls where there will be the best hand card drawing, silent auction items and the raffle ticket drawing.
Every successful fundraiser happens because of incredible volunteers and donations from the community. For this year’s poker run, the donations include a wonderful variety of auction items, raffle goods, and food.
“We have amazing volunteers and supporters. But we are always looking for dedicated volunteers who have the same passion and love for the breed,” shares Donna.
Looking through the photos and adoption stories on the NPBR website and Facebook page, you understand the immense work that this organization is doing for the breed and for the humans that love them. You can view these pups and their stories at everyboxercounts.com or on Facebook at Northern Plains Boxer Rescue.