Sun and Fun at the Annual Poker Paddle

By a Lucia Plumley VerSteeg

Saturday, July 23 was the day of the 16th Annual Cranberry Lake Boat Club’s Poker Paddle on the river in Wanakena, and it was a perfect day for this event! Although I no longer paddle my kayak, I do enjoy welcoming the paddlers back to shore and participating in the other events in Z-Park. My niece and her cousin paddled, and as soon as they landed, her son and his girlfriend headed out in the same canoe and were actually able to pick up the required number of chips before the 2:00 deadline.

My niece’s poker hand enabled her to win a very nice second place monetary prize! I participated in a 50/50 raffle, and although I didn’t win the cash, I was very pleased to win a lovely piece of jewelry that was created and donated by Kevin Woodcock of the Coyote’s Den Motel in Cranberry Lake. Kevin, by the way, won the 50/50 raffle!

The Boat Club also sold pulled pork sandwiches accompanied by a variety of side dishes and delicious cookies furnished by the folks at Coffee Fever in Star Lake. A highlight of the day’s festivities was the energetic, delightful Busted Jug Band. Their lively music made sitting still impossible, and they brought much joy to the community gathered in the park. Otto’s Abode had a steady stream of customers who left with all kinds of food items, especially ice cream. As my sister and I surveyed the wonderful variety of fresh produce, we noticed a number of their new Wanakena t-shirts disappearing off the shelf. It was wonderful to see so many friends and neighbors and to experience the extraordinary feeling of community that exists in this small and unique hamlet.

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