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  1. #1

    Talking Key West Child SMILE Rides w/Doc and Fla Pwrbt Club

    Tour Sending Child SMILE Powerboat Rides and Funds
    To Florida Keys Children’s Shelter this Weekend

    Key West, FL - - Open wide and just say A-A-A-H!!! That’s what kids from the Florida Keys Children’s Shelter will be saying, as National and World Champion, Powerboat Racing Dentist Dr. Gerardo Santiago heads to Key West as part of Stu Jones’ Florida Powerboat Club Annual Poker Run.

    The Doc, along with new teammate, Michael Sanz, as part of the 2003 Child SMILE America Tour, will provide powerboat rides to kids from the Florida Keys Children's Shelter on Saturday afternoon at the Conch Republic Seafood Company, the Official Headquarters for the Poker Run.

    There, the kids will jump aboard the Doc’s 38’ Cigarette, Zero Cavity, and Mr. Sanz’ 47’ Fountain for a spin in the harbor, and even a chance at the helm.

    “The powerboat rides are an exciting way to teach the kids boating safety, and they really have a whole lot of fun. For some, it will be their first boat ride ever, and we know we have accomplished our goal by the smile on their faces,” said Michelle May – Schmidt, Director of the Child SMILE America Tour.

    In addition to the rides, a $5,000.00 donation will be made to the Florida Keys Children's Shelter due to the “Santa Claus of Offshore," Barkley Geib, of Buford, Georgia.

    “We supported the great work being done for the kids at the Florida Keys Children’s Shelter last year, and wanted to continue that for 2003. The kids will get the powerboat rides from the Doc, and Mr. Sanz. The Shelter will receive a donation to let those children know that there are people out there who care, and that we care all year long. It’s all about the little people,” said Geib.

    The Florida Keys Children's Shelter, established in 1985, services more than 400 children a year. In 1989, the only licensed emergency shelter for children in the entire Florida Keys was opened in Plantation Key to provides services for young people ages 10 through 17 who have been abused, abandoned, neglected, have run away, are truants, or are considered ungovernable by their parents.

    The Florida Keys Children’s Shelter established a second residential program in 2001, opening a licensed emergency home in Key West for younger children and infants through age 10, who have been removed from their families due to allegations of abuse or neglect. While the children may stay with at the Shelter as little as a few hours, or as long many months-depending on their circumstances, the services the Florida Keys Children’s Shelter provide are geared to the specific needs of individual children and their families.

    The Florida Keys Children’s Shelter also helps children and families through their community-based counseling program, staffed by master's level counselors with offices at high schools in the upper, middle, and lower Key’s. Funding for the services is derived from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the Florida Department of Juvenile Justice, the Florida Department of Children and Families, and Monroe County (FL) Human Services. They also receive private donations from United Way and individual fundraising efforts, such as the donations from Child SMILE America Tour.

    The stop in Key West will be the final in a ten-city tour that has given rides and donations that exceed $100,000.00 this year.

    The Child SMILE America Tour is presented by the Lanier Harbor Marina & Poker Run, the Offshore Racing Review, Competitive EDGE Marine, the Aqua Toy Store, Zero Cavity Racing and the Ettore Squeegees – Mercury Racing Team.

    The Key West Tour is sponsored locally the Florida Powerboat Club, Reindl Powerboats, the Conch Republic Seafood Company, and the DoubleTree Grand Key Resort.

    For all information on the Child SMILE America Tour visit For all information on the Florida Keys Children’s Shelter, visit For all information on the Florida Powerboat Club, visit

  2. #2
    My Boats:
    boat less
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    now that is a cool thing to do. my hat's off to you and your organization

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2000
    The kids were all given OSO T-shirts, Reliable Carriers apparel, along with some other goodies from some other teams. They got their boat ride and walked away with a smile. Great job Michelle.

  4. #4
    Thanks guys -
    Kudo's to Doc, Michael Sanz, Steve from Comp Edge, Barkley Geib, the Doubletree, Ettore Squeegees - Mercury Racing and the teams including Steve from OSO (shirts) & promo partners, Reliable Carriers (hats) JD BYrider (shirts & souvenir basketballs), Spiderman (posters), Mohegan Sun & OSO (really cool lip balms), Barkley (Ft. Laud Child SMILE Shirts) & Poker Runs America Program Books, plus autographs by lots of the teams - and pit passes courtesy of the Key West Offshore Worlds.

    They had a great pre Thanksgiving at the Races!!

    Thanks everyone for their continued support of the Child SMILE America Tour!!

    See ya next year!

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