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Biggest Beach Party Ever coming April 26
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Photo by NANCY IZOR
From left, Indian Rocks Beach Homeowners Vice President Phil Wrobel and Indian Rocks city staffers Mike Kelley, Jim Haffey and Peter Peterich hang the new Biggest Beach Party Ever banner at Gulf Boulevard and Walsingham Road.
INDIAN ROCKS BEACH – When a street banner goes up at the intersection of Gulf Boulevard and Walsingham Road in Indian Rocks Beach, a community event is coming soon.

The big, blue banner was produced by Nate Poole of IllumiNATE Graphics in Largo and was erected last week to promote the upcoming Indian Rocks Beach Homeowners Association’s Biggest Beach Party Ever, set for Saturday, April 26, 4 to 10 p.m.

Homeowners Association Vice President Phil Wrobel said in a press release “from preparing promotional material – posters, ads, etc. – to coordinating food vendors and staffing the booths at the event, we have a group of volunteers who never fail to get it done.”

Century 21 Beggins, which has sponsored the Biggest Beach Party Ever in past years, teamed up with Paramount Title to support it again this year.

“Community events are the heart and soul of Indian Rocks Beach and we’re delighted to help make this one the event of the year,” said Beggins Marketing Manager Kathy MacKinnon.

Discount Loans brings continuous music by three local bands to the Beach Party stage. Southern Jam and El Tree-Oh with special guest harmonica player and Indian Rocks resident Chris “Awesome” Dawson perform first before headliners The Surfin’ Raccoons, musicians who have played many local area clubs for 15 years.

The event will be held on the beach just behind the Indian Rocks Beach County Park, 1700 Gulf Blvd.

Admission is free and food is for sale from local vendors: Crabby Bill’s, Pajano’s, Red Lion Pub, Slyce Pizza Bar, Sombra Coffee and Brain Freeze Treats. Wine, sponsored by 18 on the Rocks, is also available for purchase as well as beer, courtesy of Crabby Bill’s. No coolers or dogs allowed.

Raffle tickets to win a paddleboard from Watersports West will be sold at the event. This year’s media sponsor is Tampa Bay Newspapers/Beach Bee.

The Indian Rocks Beach Homeowners Association, a nonprofit organization, donates proceeds from its events to support local community projects and worthwhile causes.

More information available at IRBhome.com.

Local resident performing

A local resident will perform in a band that will play “hard-charging, uptempo” blues during the Biggest Beach Party Ever, Saturday, April 26, 4 to 10 p.m.

Chris Dawson looks forward to singing and playing the harmonica with the band El Tree-O.

From the Chicago area, Dawson has lived here since 2009. He also lived in Indian Rocks Beach from 1975 to 1982.

Dawson said El Tree-O performs weekly at Mahuffer’s Bar in Indian Shores.

“I have gone there and played a few times, and long story short, we put together an hour show,” Dawson said.

Besides El Tree-O, Discount Loans brings continuous music by two other local bands to the Beach Party stage. Southern Jam will perform first before headliners, The Surfin’ Raccoons, musicians who have played many local area clubs for 15 years, takes the stage.

Surfin’ Raccoons is a band that was formed mainly by Mike Riley and Sam Reynolds at a party at the Cinder Block in Saint Petersburg in 1985. They play manly ’60’s and ’70’s rock and blues.

The event will be held on the beach just behind the Indian Rocks Beach County Park, 1700 Gulf Blvd. Admission is free and food is for sale from local vendors: Crabby Bill’s, Pajano’s, Red Lion Pub, Slyce Pizza Bar, Sombra Coffee and Brain Freeze Treats. Wine, sponsored by 18 on the Rocks, is also available for purchase as well as beer, courtesy of Crabby Bill’s.

“There’s something for everyone. There’s a lot going on,” Dawson said. “They always put on a good show. The music is good. The vendors are good. It’s neighbors being neighborly,” he said.

Dawson, 57, said he has been playing the harmonica for 45 years. His father was a professional musician, a Dixieland jazz trombonist.

“I sang first with him when I was 6 years old on his stage,” Dawson said.
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