Published On: Thu, Mar 22nd, 2012

LOCAL COMMUNITY SUPPORT KEEPS BOCA RATON BOATING BEACH BASH AFLOAT


Non Profits, Corporate Sponsors and Private Citizens Fund Annual Salute to People with Disabilities Upwards of 3000 Expected March 24 Event, at Spanish River Park

March 14, 2012, Boca Raton, FL…A burst of local community support is insuring that the 4th annual Boating and Beach Bash for People with Disabilities maintains its reputation as ‘The Miracle on the Intracoastal’.  According to event organizers, it will also continue its standing as the biggest, free, fun-day event in the nation for people with physical and/or intellectual challenges.

 

Thanks to generous donations from the public and private sectors and local nonprofit organizations, the 2012 Bash will be held Saturday, March 24, from 10:00 AM to 3:00 PM, at Spanish River Park on A1A in Boca Raton.  Upwards of 3,000 guests are expected to attend.

 

“We couldn’t do this without the kindness and generosity we’ve seen from every sector of the community,” says Bash founder and co-director Jay Van Vechten.  What has stunned him and Bash co-director Zack Rice is the broad range of donors that have stepped to the fore to fund this year’s event.

 

Rice says, ”We’re received contributions from Unicorn Children’s Foundation, Wounded Warriors in Action Foundation, Stand Among Friends, the Achilles Track Club, the Schmidt Family Foundation, the Carl and Renee Landegger Family Charitable Trust, the Tim Snow Scholarship Foundation, the Rotary Club, the Alzheimer’s Foundation, and the E M Lynn Foundation, Shake a Leg Miami, among others.

 

“We appreciate every donation, big or small,” adds Van Vechten, “Because collectively it helps meet expenses. We’re especially grateful for those small donations, such as the $10 handed to my wife by a woman at a local store. She said she hoped it would help. My wife told her, every little bit helps.”

 

Other groups lining up to be part of this year’s event include Korey’s Krew, the Palm Beach Drowning Prevention Coalition, Canine Companions for Independence, the Big Bike Riders Children’s Foundation, the Florida Amputee Support Team, Seagull Industries for the Disabled, Accessible Home Finders, Searcy Denney Scarola Barnhart & Shipley, PA., Affordable Accessibility, Automobility Sales, Center for Independent Living, Merrill Lynch, Ocean Conversions & Mobility, Progressive Self Defense, Prosperity Life Planning, Schumacher MV1 of Palm Beach, Seagull Industries, VA Hospital of WPB and Vital Flight, 211 Palm Beach/Treasure Coast.

 

Planned Activities Promise a Fun Day for All Attendees

 

Attendees at the 2012 Bash will be treated to a complimentary BBQ lunch and will have an opportunity to enjoy a free ride on the Intracoastal aboard one of dozens of yachts and motor boats, lent for the day by the generous members of Royal Palm Yacht & Country Club.  A Fun Zone, an Exhibitor Zone, therapy ponies, service dogs, live music and entertainment, and Animal Planet’s ‘Gator Boys’ round out the day’s offerings.  For further information visit: www.boatingbeachbash.com.

 

WHAT IS THE BOATING & BEACH BASH FOR PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES?

South Florida’s Annual Boating and Beach Bash for People with Disabilities (www.boatingbeachbash.com) is the largest, free, fun-day in the United States for people with physical and/or intellectual challenges and their caregivers.  It is held each March in the tropical setting of Boca Raton, Florida’s beautiful Spanish River Park. The highlight of the event is the opportunity to enjoy a boat ride aboard a flotilla of private yachts along the famed Intracoastal Waterway. All boats are donated by members of Royal Palm Yacht & Country Club in Boca Raton. The Bash is completely organized and run by community volunteers and is funded through private donations.

 

SOME FACTS:

 

  1. The Boating and Beach Bash was conceived in 2008 by members of the City of Boca Raton Advisory Board for People with Disabilities. The event was created as a unique, fun way to salute people with disabilities and their caregivers by celebrating diversity in South Florida.  Just consider:
  1. a.      20% of all Americans have a disability.
  2. b.      That number soars to one in four, or 25% of all men, women and children living in Palm Beach County.
  3. c.       50% + of Americans are touched by disabilities within their families or among friends and colleagues.

 

  1. The first Bash in March of 2009 attracted over 350+ participants, along with seven yachts offering rides to all attendees. A BBQ lunch was served.  A band, featuring musicians with disabilities, rocked the park.  All other services were volunteered and donated.

 

  1. The second Bash in March of 2010 attracted 700+ participants, virtually doubling in size from 2009.  The event was enhanced by numerous volunteers from the Coast Guard, Boca High School’s Junior Navy ROTC students and from the private sector. A dozen yachts participated.

 

  1. The third Bash in March 20, 2011 attracted 2,000+ guests and was the largest, free, fun-day ever staged in the United States for people with disabilities, their families and caregivers. Called “The Miracle on the Intracoastal,” by the media, the 2011 Bash featured 25 yachts and over 100 volunteers from the public and private sector. An exhibitor zone with 25 leading nonprofit organizations was added and the Bash gained visibility throughout Florida, nationally and internationally.

 

  1. The fourth Bash, scheduled for March 24, 2012, 10:00 AM – 3:00 PM, will also salute Purple Heart recipients through an association with the Wounded Warriors in Action Foundation, a 501c3 organization (www.wwiaf.org). This opening of hearts to veterans with disabilities further enhances the Bash’s growing circle of recognition and celebration of diversity in our community.  The 2012 Bash, no longer a City-sponsored event, offers unmatched sponsorship opportunities for companies and individuals.

 

If you would like to be a sponsor of the 2012 Boating & Beach Bash, please contact Bash Co-Directors: Jay Van Vechten at 561-715-2622, or at info@boatingbeachbash.com. Or Zack Rice, RPY&CC Marina Director, at 561-289-3680 or at marina@rpycc.org.  Visit the Bash website: www.boatingbeachbash.com for updates and news. To make a donation to the Bash, send your tax deductable contribution to Wounded Warriors in Action Foundation – BASH.  Mail to: Boating & Beach Bash, PO Box 99, Boca Raton, FL 33429.

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