3rd Annual South Walton RUN/SUP Race Series

race, paddleboard, nature

The sun rose over Western Lake on Saturday morning, beginning a beautiful day for a paddleboard/run race at Grayton Beach State Park. Over the course of the day, participants from around the area would race in three categories, seeking victory in the competitive division, the recreational course, or the relay.

As the charity beneficiary of the event, CBA staff and volunteers were on-hand to hand out water, work the registration table, point the racers the correct direction, and more.

Photo by Rotorhead Aerial Photography.

“At CBA we’re so lucky to have such dedicated staff and volunteers,” Erika Zambello, Communications Coordinator, says, “They did a great job for us today!”

By choosing Western Lake and the coastal dune ecosystem of Grayton Beach State Park, race organizers showcased the unique environment of the Florida Panhandle, and participants and volunteers enjoyed watching Great Blue Herons, Brown Pelicans, and more fly across the sky throughout the day.

2017 International Coastal Cleanup

At 9 a.m. on Saturday, September 16th, volunteers hit the beach at both Norriego Point and Eagle Creek armed with gloves and trash bags: it was International Coastal Cleanup time!

Every year, volunteers around the world gather on their local beaches and marshes to remove marine debris and other trash. According to the Ocean Conservancy, plastic pollution “has been found in 62% of all sea birds and in 100% of sea turtle species.” Since the International Coastal Cleanup began, “nearly 12 million people and counting have been part of the world’s biggest volunteer effort to protect the ocean.”

Photo by Frances Roy Agency.

“The International Coastal Clean Up raises critical awareness of the impact of pollution in our oceans,” Alison McDowell, Director of the Choctawhatchee Basin Alliance, explains, “the program is now over 30 years old, and together the participants have removed over 18 million pounds of trash from our shorelines. Here at CBA we work to protect our waterways, and we love sharing our work creating swimmable, fishable waters with the community through this event.”

Volunteers at Eagle Creek.

Over the course of two hours on the warm morning, volunteers scoured the sand and water for trash they could throw away, ending the event with an impressive amount of marine debris that can now be properly disposed of and recycled. Volunteers are true coastal stewards, and we thank them for their efforts!

Extra thank you to the Frances Roy Agency for sending us your photos from Norriego Point!