The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention Florida Panhandle Chapter announces the return of its event, Paddle for Prevention. The second annual event will be held on May 6 from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. at the Gulf Place Beach Access in Santa Rosa Beach.
Paddle for prevention is an effort to expose the community to paddle boarding and introduce the healing and therapeutic benefits of the water.
This event is for all levels of experience from first-time paddlers to experts. Boards will be provided by YOLO Board and participants are welcome to bring their own boards as well to enjoy a day of fun on the water.
Amanda Abbott, Paddle for Prevention Chair, turns to paddle boarding and surfing to keep a healthy life balance and wants to share with others who may not always have access to the sport.
“If we can help just a couple of people who are battling depression or mental illness and have them connect with paddle boarding as a release, then we have succeeded,” said Abbott.
“The inaugural event raised nearly $9,000 for American Foundation of Suicide Prevention last year and we are looking forward to exceeding that goal this year. Funds go toward supporting awareness, research, advocacy, prevention & education.”
Registration starts at 8 a.m. and the kickoff event, the Grande SUP Race, will start at 9 a.m. This is a great opportunity for a local business to sign up as a team and represent their company on the water. All six team members will be on one large oversized inflatable board and the overall winner will receive a vacation package from Platinum Sponsor, ResortQuest Real Estate & Vacation Rentals. The Open Paddle for individual registrants will be from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. and is perfect for people who want to try paddle boarding for the first time as we will have assistance available in the water.
The After Party will be hosted at La Playa from 12 p.m. to 2 p.m. across the street at 37 Town Center Loop with a special food and drink menu and live music. Raffle prizes include a YOLO Board, vacation packages, local gift certificates, and more!
Register online today for Paddle for Prevention at AFSP.org/paddle.
This year’s event is being put on alongside The Bellamy of Thirty A at the Gulf Place designated beach access provided by Southern Beach Management. This access is located at 4451 W Co Hwy 30 A, just west of Ed Walline Beach Access at the intersection of Hwy 393 and 30A. Attendees are encouraged to park at Gulf Place.