Kick off the spring boating season at the Lake of the Ozarks - and win big prizes - during the 18th Annual Spring Harbor Hop poker run on Saturday, May 2.
Spring Harbor Hop participants will try to complete the best poker hand (or hands) by traveling by lake or by land to their choice of waterfront checkpoints across the Lake (there are over 40 businesses consisting primarily of bars, restaurants and marinas on the Hop).
While all the stops for the event are boater friendly, participants also can enjoy the day and the scenery by land, driving from one location to the next.
"The Spring Harbor Hop happens at a time when many flowers and trees around the Lake are in full bloom, so it's just gorgeous," CVB Director of Member Services Heather Brown says. "Many people make a full day of it, as the event lets them enjoy the food and fun of the Lake, all while taking in our beautiful spring scenery. This year we're expecting as many as 1,400 people to come out to celebrate the beginning of the boating season."
Players will begin their "hop" by making a suggested donation of $20 per hand and drawing their first card at any of the participating locations. Six additional cards will be drawn for each hand as participants visit the various Harbor Hop locations around the Lake. When the seventh card is drawn, the hand is complete and is turned in at that final location. An additional card to help improve the hand can be obtained at that final location for a $5 donation.
Prizes will be awarded for the top 10 poker hands at the Hop, as well as the four worst hands and 10 randomly selected winners. All eligible hands must be turned in by 7 p.m. Winners will be notified by certified mail. There also will be prizes for "section winners" who complete their entire hand in one of these four sections:
Most Harbor Hop locations open at 11 a.m., though some open as early as 9 a.m. Hours will vary from location to location, so "hoppers" should consult the list of locations and operating hours by visiting FunLake.com/HarborHop. Complete rules for the Harbor Hop can also be found on that site, or by calling the Lake of the Ozarks Convention and Visitor Bureau at 1-800-FUN-LAKE (386-5253).