By Amanda Hatfield
COCOA BEACH -- A partnership of extreme proportions has been made, thus creating one of the most "epic" sporting event to grace the Space Coast.
Smooth Running and Ron Jon Surf Shop have melded their creative, sports-focused energy to present Beach'N Boards Fest.
The first-ever Beach'N Boards Fest event takes place March 6-10 at Ron Jon Surf Shop in Cocoa Beach.
Mitch Varnes, owner of Smooth Running, knows what it takes to get a large event off the ground.
"I founded the Sebastian Inlet Pro surfing event in 2005, and it ran through 2010," Mr. Varnes said. "I am also the founder of the Melbourne Music Marathon Weekend, which just celebrated its fifth year this February."
Beach'N Boards Fest is a premiere beach and board-focused event with all types of board sports -- surfing, skateboarding, kite boarding, skim boarding, and much more.
"There will also be a collegiate beach volleyball tournament and live music," Mr. Varnes added.
Some of the best athletes, ages 21 and younger, and will offer demonstrations in the sports they excel in.
Another aspect that sets Beach'N Boards Fest apart from other action events of its kind is the film festival.
Known for hosting the world's best action sports film festival, X-Dance will travel from its Utah-based home to the sandy shores of Cocoa Beach.
"X-Dance wanted to travel and expose its event to a new audience," Mr. Varnes said. "This film portion of the festival will be on the beach and features some of the best action sports films of 2012."
A junior pro-surfing competition will also take place during Beach'N Boards Fest.
"The event is full and consists of the best men and women surfers, ages 21 and younger, from eight countries, plus California, Hawaii and the whole East Coast," Mr. Varnes said.
This year's surf event features an astounding total combined cash purse of $21,000, making it the richest pro-surfing event to take place in Cocoa Beach.
Looking to try a new sport? Professional athletes of all kinds of board-focused sports will be available for lessons, as well as demonstrations.
"Ron Jon Surf School will be on-site offering surf, stand-up paddle board, and kite boarding lessons," Mr. Varnes added. "People are welcome to sign up for lessons through our website."
Those who aren't as adventurous can enjoy the film festival, people watching, and music.
"We have many bands lined up for Beach'N Boards Fest," Mr. Varnes said. "Matt Costa is this year's headliner."
An event of such epic proportions will undoubtedly produce a lot of waste, but Mr. Varnes and Ron Jon Surf Shop have made sure to keep Cocoa Beach clean.
"We are partnering with Florida Tech's sustainability program to make this a model for action sports festivals," Mr. Varnes said.
With so much going on throughout the five days, Beach'N Boards Fest is sure to bring entertainment to those of all ages.
"People should come out to this event because it's going to be a lot of fun, fun, fun," Mr. Varnes said.
Beach'N Boards Fest will be held March 6-10, with most events beginning at 7:30 a.m.
Volunteers are still needed and can sign up through the website.
For more information about Beach'N Boards Fest, visit www.beachnboardsfest.com.