Poker Run Fundraiser to Benefit Kids Korner Playground

Join the fun for the Leesburg Boating Club's Poker Run Around the Lake fundraiser to benefit reconstruction of the Kids Korner playground at Leesburg’s Venetian Gardens.

The event on Sunday, March 24, features food and live entertainment. The poker run competition invites participants to use boats, cars or motorcycles to travel around various restaurants and pubs along Lake Harris and the western Harris Chain of Lakes. Playing cards will be distributed at each location – the participant with the best poker hand wins $250. A raffle will offer other chances to win prizes.

Registration and start will be from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Leesburg Boating Club, 1 Dozier Circle, in Venetian Gardens. Last vehicle check-in is at 4:30 p.m. Players will visit these locations: Palm Gardens (opens at 7:30 a.m.), Sinbad's (opens at noon - cards offered at 10 a.m.), Okeefe's Irish Pub (opens at noon - cards offered at 10 a.m.), Lake Harris Hideaway (opens at 11 a.m.) and JB Boondocks (opens at noon).

Local bluesman “Beautiful” Bobby Blackmon will perform at the Boating Club from 3 to 7 p.m. Food also will be served up throughout the day at the Boating Club.

Poker run entry is $20 and includes entertainment, food, beverage and a raffle ticket. For more information, contact (352) 250-3814 or e-mail fobrien@gate.net.

Kids Korner playground has provided two decades of special memories for local children and families. Unfortunately, time, weather, and heavy usage have significantly damaged the mostly wood structure. Many original features were broken and repaired. Some parts of the playground were replaced or removed entirely. Still, much of the structure is supported with warped, splintered and cracked boards.

Community members, local businesses and organizations are joining together to rebuild the playground. Most fundraising for the project will be this year. If successful, the playground could be rebuilt sometime next year.

For more information about how you can help Kids Korner, contact City of Leesburg Public Information Officer Robert Sargent at (352) 728-9721 or e-mail playground committee member Caroline Van Dyken at saftydog@earthlink.net.

Leesburg is a progressive city of more than 20,000 residents in northwest Lake County. The city government serves twice as many people with its electric, gas, water, wastewater and fiber-optic public utilities. Leesburg also is a central hub for commerce, attracting 50,000 people to work each weekday.