Swankey Parties With The Paddleboarders

Racecourse maps at the 623 Swankey party.

by Shayne Benowitz

It was another action-packed weekend for Team Swankey with weddings galore, as usual. We were also thrilled to throw the kick-off bash for the annual Key West Paddleboard Classic at our Swankey Space at 623 Duval. With nearly 300 racers registered to compete, let’s just say the place was packed!

YOLO Boards sponsored the party featuring tasty sandwiches and cold beer. Race Coordinator and YOLO-sponsored racer Michael “Westy” Westenberger was on hand with his team to discuss race strategies and answer questions. The mood was definitely festive as racers spilled onto our balcony getting psyched for the big day.

Racers hit the water!

The race Saturday morning started from Smather’s Beach where standup paddleboards, kayaks, dories, sea cycles, surf skis, and prone racers embarked on a 12-mile circumnavigation of Key West. I like a leisurely paddle from time to time, but this was intense! Kristin enjoyed cheering the racers on from the beach.

Westy at the Paddle Republic party.

Sunday evening, Swankey hosted another paddleboard bash. This time to kickoff Paddle Republic, Westy and business partner Rowdy’s new endeavor. The two former rugby team members turned pro SUP racers have united to provide paddleboard clinics, workouts, and ecotours to paddle enthusiasts of all levels. For more information, check out their facebook page.

The cake!

The party was great with an amazing paddleboard shaped cake designed by Key West Cakes.

An excursion with Paddle Republic could make for a great activity for your wedding party or guests during a fun-filled wedding weekend in Key West. They definitely come highly recommended!

Shayne Benowitz is a freelance writer and social media specialist. For more visit her Wanderlust Blog & Website.

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