On Friday, May 4th, 2007 at 3:30pm, the Palm Beach County Parks and Recreation Department notified us that the first SFWA event to be held at Lake Okeeheelee Park from 10:00am until 6:00pm is cancelled.

Apparently, our permit for the event (which has been in place for over two months) and scheduled riding activities were in conflict with a SkiClub event at the Park. The Park has five lakes, two of which are designated wakeboarding only. The SkiClub of Palm Beach County is having an event that will use the other three lakes and has prevented our access into the other two lakes (which again, they are not even using). The SkiClub had the opportunity to allow us to use the lakes regardless of the misstaken permits but choose not to.

Everyone, this is exactly the reason that we have decided to form the South Florida Wakeboarding Association. Wakeboarding in South Florida has been run out by groups like this who are not friendly towards the wakeboarding community. This turn of events should be upsetting to everyone who wakeboards and wakeskates. Our sport is under attack in South Florida and we have a long road to go to accomplish our goals, that message is crystal clear as I type this today. It is disheartening and extremely disappointing that this could happen.

The SFWA is currently pursuing our options in this matter but for now it appears we have no choice but to cancel the event and regroup.

I apologize for any inconvenience this may cause to those of you who planned to attend the event. It will be rescheduled at a different location in the upcoming days.

We welcome your input.

Jimmy Beno – SFWA President

Continued

After having time to think about the events that transpired this past weekend regarding the cancelation of the first SFWA gathering I still am speechless. I think the community of wake riders feels the same judging by the number of hits on this website over the last day (over 300 in 12 hours). All the comments are welcomed and much appreciated. I think the “sleeping dog” of wake riders has awaken so to speak. Everything happens for a reason and this weekend may yet have some positive come out of it. If we can open a dialogue on this matter and effect change then one day we will look back at this as a positive.We will have other events, we are already planning for a July event and a tournament in November. These will not be stopped. However as I read the comments section of the web posting discussing the cancelation, one comment really stuck out to me-a comment by a gentleman named Dave, he wrote “Look at USA Waterski statistics and although still the largest member group…”. It got me thinking if we are going to effect change then we need to organize. Right now this organization is a strong 40+ people after three and half weeks of being “live”, let’s be one voice and be heard as we move forward. I am asking everyone who commented and looked at this page to step up and join the organization. The membership benefits are great but more importantly as our numbers grow so does our unified voice.

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