Poker Ride proceeds donated to schools

From left, Kiwanis president Bill Simons and Poker Ride co-chairmen Michele Baird and Dan Holub present checks representing the proceeds of the Poker Ride benefit this summer to high school principals Blake Carlsen of Enterprise, John Nesemann of Wallowa and Rich Graham of Joseph. Photo by Elane Dickenson

While $1,620 may go only a small ways to filling a big gap in the budgets of Wallowa County School districts, the Wallowa, Enterprise and Joseph school districts gratefully accepted checks of $540 each this week from the Wallowa County Board of Realtors and the fledgling Wallowa County Kiwanis Club.

The money was raised by the realtors at their first Poker Ride at Wallowa Lake in August, an an event that attracted 43 riders (with a few hikers thrown in). The Kiwanis club, in its first fund raiser, held a pancake breakfast in conjunction with the ride.

"We want the schools to use the money for whatever they most need it, teachers salaries, books, or wherever the need is," said Dan Holub, board of realtors president and co-chairman of the Poker Ride. He said that the board borrowed the Poker Ride idea from other areas, and that in some places Poker Rides raise over $25,000. "We expect to do better next year," he said. Board treasurer Michele Baird was co-chair of the project.

The districts' high school principals who gathered at Enterprise High School Monday to pick up the checks, said that the money would probably be used for their schools' general fund expenses.

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