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Nation’s largest, FREE, one-day event for people with disabilities–both seen and unseen– returns to Boca Raton on March 4, 2023; will be dedicated to late co-founder Jay Van Vechten.

BOCA RATON, Fla. – January 23, 2023 – The 14th Annual Boating & Beach Bash for People with Disabilities – the nation’s largest, free, one-day event for people with disabilities, both seen and unseen – will again welcome back families who love the beach, boat rides and national musical entertainment. Presented by the American Disabilities Foundation (ADF), the Bash returns to Boca Raton after a two-year hiatus.

The 14th Annual Boating & Beach Bash for People with Disabilities will be held from
10 a.m.-3 p.m., Saturday, March 4, 2023, at Spanish River Park, 3001 North Ocean Blvd. (A1A), Boca Raton, FL 33431.

Also coming back for 2023 will be Kechi Okwuchi, a Nigerian-American singer, motivational speaker and now author. Okwuchi headlined the Bash in 2018 and 2019, after becoming a finalist on the 12th season of America’s Got Talent in 2017. Her disabilities were sustained after she survived the Sosoliso Airlines Flight 1145 crash on Dec. 10, 2005. Okwuchi suffered severe third-degree burns all over her body. To date, she has endured more than 100 surgeries.

At the 2023 Bash, she will be performing and signing her book, “More Than My Scars,” at the new American Disabilities Foundation tent. Learn more about her book here: (480) I Survived A Plane Crash | No Filter | @LADbibl

“We are thrilled to welcome back Kechi; she was a tremendous crowd-pleaser, and she will definitely get the audience dancing again,” said ADF Co-Founder and Honorary Bash Co-Chair Lowell Van Vechten. “This is our first Bash since 2020, when we were really lucky to hold our event before the pandemic closed the world down. After two years away, we cannot wait to welcome smiling faces, dancing guests and our fabulous boat rides.”

The 14th Annual Bash will also welcome back singer Kellye Cash, who will perform and serve as Honorary Mistress of Ceremonies.

“The Bash committee will welcome its guests to help us pay tribute to our founder and fearless leader, Jay Van Vechten, whom we lost in 2020,” said Christopher Noe, ADF board president and Bash executive director. “There will also be an honorary memorial presented to Casey Kolp, in memory of her daughter Deanna Pardo, who was a beloved Bash committee member and ambassador. This will be a special event for many reasons, so we hope to see new and returning Bash lovers on March 4.”

The committee is currently accepting applications for volunteers, sponsors and vendors at New sponsors include CYGNA and the Firestone Family “Pay it Forward” Fund.

Designed as a Spring Break vacation for all people with disabilities, their family members and supportive caregivers, the Bash has welcomed guests from around the world. It is the only event of its kind, offering complimentary, scheduled boat rides, special access to the beach and ocean with Mobi Mats, a Kids Fun Zone, therapy workshops led by trained specialists, wheelchair yoga, music, costumed dance parties, therapy ponies and dogs, a BBQ lunch, and more. Everything is free and geared toward the guests’ special needs.

The Bash was started in 2009 as an event hosted by the City of Boca Raton Advisory Board for People with Disabilities. The City relinquished the Bash in 2011 to the management of Executive Director Jay Van Vechten and his wife, Lowell. Since then, through community support and donations, the couple and the Bash’s planning committee have pushed the event’s growth beyond wildest expectations. The Bash grew to become the largest, free, wholly disability-friendly event in the country with a full schedule of entertainment, recreation, boat rides, beach access, vendors, exhibitions, workshops and food in the nation. It has also become a Spring Break destination event in South Florida. Learn more at

14th Annual Boating & Beach Bash for People with Disabilities
10 a.m.-3 p.m.
March 4, 2023
Spanish River Park, 3001 North Ocean Blvd. (A1A), Boca Raton, FL 33431; 561-715-2622
National singing acts Kechi Okwuchi and Kellye Cash will headline the 14th Annual Boating & Beach Bash for People with Disabilities. The Bash, is the nation’s largest free festival for people with special needs – both seen and unseen – their family members and caregivers. Festivities include boat rides, beach access, sporting events, ponies for petting, costumed action heroes, wheelchair yoga, a Kids Fun Zone, food, music and dance parties. This year, the Bash is dedicated to its founder and fearless leader, Jay Van Vechten, who passed away in 2020.

Michelle Brown
Kaliah Communications, Inc.

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