Cat Uden and her fellow members of the Surfrider Foundation, and members of Stand Up Paddleboard Community, are continuing to fight for fewer restrictions on stand up paddleboarding off Hollywood Beach.
Bruce Wilkie, marine safety chief for the City of Hollywood, made a presentation recommending that an area of about 37 blocks along Hollywood Beach and 100 yards out in that area be closed to stand up paddleboarders between the hours of 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
The paddleboard community, the Hollywood Parks and Recreation Advisory Board, and the Surfrider Foundation recommended as a compromise that a 16 block area from Arthur Street to Tyler Street and 50 yards out be closed to paddleboarders between the hours of 10:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. They see no evidence of danger from standup paddleboarders to bathers in the ocean just off the beach.
They have seen many examples of stand up paddleboarders interacting and having pleasant conversations with bathers in the ocean.
“We have data that shows that stand up paddleboarders are not a danger to bathers,” said Uden. “Hollywood has been advertising that it is a good beach for stand up paddleboarding and Ocean Rescue should not be harassing stand up paddleboarders. We just want to enjoy the ocean. We have the perfect beach for stand up paddleboarding. Bathers are only allowed to go out up to 50 yards. Why should we be restricted to 100 yards out.”