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Water activities for persons with disabilities at Florida sea resort

Surfer girl with disability having a blast on the waves at Beach
Photo: TonyTheTigersSon

From 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday, March 1, Spanish River Park and the adjacent beachfront along A1A in Boca Raton will be transformed into a paradise for those who would not normally be able to participate in water-related activities, Sun Sentinel reports.

More than 6,000 are expected, and admission is free. Attractions include boat rides, beach access, sporting events, ponies for petting, costumed action heroes, wheelchair yoga, miniature train rides, a Kids Fun Zone and dance parties.

Boca Raton resident Katelyn Martin, 26, has been to most of the 12 Boating and Beach Bash celebrations since 2009 when the event was initiated by the City of Boca Raton Advisory Board for People with Disabilities. Katelyn, who has cerebral palsy, not only looks forward to all the activities but is also a volunteer and a DJ.

Her mother, Melody, said despite being in a wheelchair her daughter is looking forward to the fun times that day. “The volunteers and all those involved make it such a wonderful event for people with all types of disabilities,” she said. “There are no boundaries; everyone can be involved in the celebration. There’s so much love.”

While guests with disabilities have over the years enjoyed scenic rides on yachts and boats along the Intracoastal Waterway, new this year will be more pontoon boats captained by volunteers from the Freedom Boat Club. The event is filled with an array of national and local entertainment. There will also be food and beverages available for purchase. Spanish River Park will come alive with big-name performers such as Kellye Cash, a former Miss America and the niece of country superstar Johnny Cash. Cash, who will sing the National Anthem, is no stranger to the cause as she has raised a son with a disability.

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