Democrat Photo by Rob Potter
KEN AND PATTI McGurrin, center, proprietors of McGurrins Pub in Mileses, hosted their second annual poker run on Saturday. The event raised money for Randy Nygard of Kauneonga Lake, who was severely injured in a logging accident six months ago. Pictured with the McGurrins are Nygards sister, Sue Newham, second from left, poker run winner Carlo Pittaluga, left, and his friends and fellow riders Tim Culligan, behind the McGurrins, Bill Culligan and Eugene Nesin, right.
Through for Native
By Rob Potter
MILESES July 25, 2006 The rain showers that fell throughout Sullivan County on Saturday afternoon could not stop a group of determined bikers.
A total of 46 bikers participated in the second annual McGurrins Pub Poker Run. Proceeds from the event were donated to Randy Nygard, a Kauneonga Lake man who was left paralyzed after a logging accident back in January.
The motorcyclists began the run at McGurrins and then rode to several other taverns across the county. They picked cards for their poker hand during stops at The Fairway Inn in Roscoe, Cobblers in Liberty, The White Sulphur Springs Inn and Scullions Cabin in Callicoon Center.
The participants returned to McGurrins about 4 p.m.
Were hoping to raise as much money as we can, said Patti McGurrin, who co-owns the Mileses pub with her husband Ken, as she waited for the last few riders to return.
Carlo Pittaluga of Monticello won the poker run with a nine-to-King straight. He rode along the course with friends and fellow Monticello residents Bill Culligan, Tim Culligan and Eugene Nesin.
Several weeks ago, Livingston Manor residents Bill Mead and Mark Zeininger suggested to Ken and Patti McGurrin that they should hold this years poker run to benefit Nygard. Mead noted that he has never met Nygard, but heard about the accident and wanted to help out in some way.
I spoke to Ken and Patti about holding the poker run for Randy, Mead said. They talked for a couple of minutes and then said they would do it.
Once the riders returned to McGurrins, they enjoyed the sounds of Cutting Edge, a band from Port Jervis. Bikers and non-bikers alike also enjoyed a pig roast.
Troy Hauser of Jeffersonville, Joe Hill of Parksville and Gary Stuhmiller of Livingston Manor donated their time to the cause. They arrived at the pub early in the morning with a large outdoor cooker that is owned by the Livingston Manor community. They then spent the entire day cooking the pig.
They have all done a great job, Mead commented.
Randy Nygard was not at the poker run, but his sister, Sue Newham, attended the event. Newham said that her brother finally came home a few weeks ago after spending four months at Westchester Medical Center in Valhalla and two months at Helen Hayes Hospital in Stony Point.
She said that it was nice that so many people have been willing to help Nygard. In addition to Saturdays poker run, Newham said that the Kauneonga Lake Fire Department held a benefit chicken dinner on June 3. A few days after the dinner, fire department officials presented Randy Nygard and his wife Patty with a $7,000 check.
That money helped the Nygards purchase a special wheelchair.
But he still needs things and other medical equipment, Newham said.
Patti McGurrin said yesterday that when all of the money from the poker run, pig roast, 50/50 and other raffles was counted, the event raised a total of $1,300 for Nygard.
McGurrin noted that the final amount includes the 50/50 prize of $110 which was donated back by Cliff Patton, a $100 donation from an anonymous neighbor and $100 from Pittaluga, who donated back a portion of his prize money.