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About 6,000 people filled the parking lot of Island Water Sports in Deerfield Beach last Friday, Oct. 21 from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. for the first annual Daytime Radness.

Attendees were able to skate the VANS half pipe, pick up some free stuff from their favorite vendors like Quiksilver, Volcom and SkullCandy, and be a part of giving back to their community.

Event helped raise money for local and national charities including: Grind for Life, the Karen Rice Benefit, and Give Jeans a Chance.

Through the sale inside the store and raffle tickets, Island Water Sports and its sponsors raised more than $5,500 to help Karen Rice, who left for MD Anderson in Houston on Saturday.

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Island Water Sports was able to team up with ABC's Extreme Home Makeover in helping the Gibb's family from West Union, Iowa.

Audrey Gibbs is a mother, a widow, a farm owner and a maternal optimist who won't let anything stop her from raising her six children, not even her blindness and her battle with a potentially fatal condition.

Seven months after her husband died, Audrey had a brain aneurism that affected a quarter of her brain--leaving her legally blind. The doctors cannot say if she is going to lose her sight completely or even if she is going to live or die.

Audrey's six kids are an eclectic crew. Josh, 20, loves motorcycles. Nathan, 18, wants to own his own farm. Thomas, 18, loves to tear anything mechanical apart. Jessica, 16, would like to be a physical therapist. Nicole, 14, is big into surfing though she's never tried it before. Daniel, 13, is the youngest and most active of all the Gibbs kids.



The Gibbs Family was awesome to hang out with. All the kids were super chilled and thankful for the opportunity they had been given. IWS took the family on a huge shopping spree, helping all of them pick out the gear they needed to be ready for a Florida vacation. Before they arrived non of the Gibbs family had ever seen the ocean, so being able to share that experience with them was awesome. We had been informed that one of the Gibbs daughters, Nicole had always wanted to learn how to surf. knowing this, Cheyne and Linsey Cottrell, owners at IWS were stoked to take her and the whole family out for a surfing lesson on Deerfield Beach. They all had a great time, all stood up and all definitely got the stoke that only comes from riding your first wave.


All in all it was an awesome day with the Gibbs family. Surf, Stoke and changing lives. All in a days work.


To learn more about the Gibbs family check out the episode here:

You can check out the episode here

Sun Sentinel September 15, 2011

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September 15, 2011|Elizabeth Roberts Forum Publishing Group

For the first time in 26 years, there will be no Midnight Madness in October.

"Last year, we spent $6,700 on police and fire services, and we had 15,000 kids and people on the beach. This year, the police and fire fee would be double," said organizer Linsey Cottrell.  

Cottrell also serves as event planner for Island Water Sports, the business that puts on the annual event. Cottrell had said last year that problems arose when 2010's free event went viral.

Word spread via fliers and on Facebook. Instead of the 5,000 people expected, between 12,000 and 15,000 eventgoers, mostly minors, jammed into the S-curve on A1A. Issues, Cottrell said, arose from a festival that drew too many pre-teens to a venue that offered not only skateboarding demonstrations and discounted board shorts, but alcohol.

"Then the city made us close the road at 11 p.m., and we had 12,000 kids with nowhere to go," Cottrell said last year. "That is where things went bad."

Merchants and residents said that by midnight, teens were vomiting on the sidewalk and flogging to the beach.

Cottrell said if there is Midnight Madness in October 2012, it will involve just Island Water Sports and a beachfront-sales-event-turned-block-party.

"We will be breaking away from the [Deerfield] Island Partnership," Cottrell told the City Commission on Sept 6, referring to the coalition of beach businesses. "Last year we had complaints from residents. We need to address those issues."

Carmen Morley, 12, was disappointed to learn of the cancellation.

"It was a lot of fun," she said. "It is something we like to do every year."

"It's not their fault what happened," agreed 13-year-old Ransom Gravatt, who also attended last year. "There was just one too many things going on."

Next year's event, Cottrell said, will be a return to the end-of-season-sale event of the past.

"We do it for the kids. We want them to have a good time," Cottrell said.

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The Observer, Sept 15, 2011

The article originally appeared in the Observer, Sept 15, 2011.

Sun Sentinel September 10, 2011

September 10, 2011|By Larry Barszewski, Sun Sentinel

DEERFIELD BEACH — Midnight Madness has run out of time, at least for this year.

The 30-year-old event that attracts thousands of teens to the island each year is a victim of its own success.

"It's very disappointing. It's kind of like a tradition," said Keenan Flegel, 15, a surfer from Lighthouse Point. "Everyone's getting excited about it, even a month before it happens."

Island Water Sports, which hosts the October event, canceled it last week after city officials recommended against shutting down State Road A1A near the city's pier for the event.

The city agreed to the same request last year because the annual event was outgrowing the store's parking lot and beginning to pose a safety risk on A1A, but the 15,000 who turned out overwhelmed organizers who didn't have sufficient security or portable toilets for the crowd.

Teens loved the music, skateboard demonstrations, product displays and games that turned into a street festival, but nearby residents complained about people littering and urinating on their lawns, traffic congestion in front of their homes and crowds spreading to the beach at night.

"It was the biggest mess because you couldn't go anywhere," said Robert Erickson, who lives down Northeast Second Street from from the event. "They were turning around on lawns trying to get out of here."

Still, Erickson, whose home of 24 years is up for sale, said he's less concerned about a once-a-year event than the beach congestion and noise he experiences most weekends.

City officials said Island Water Sports should move the event to the city's main beach parking lot south of Hillsboro Boulevard, but organizers said that would defeat its main purpose, which is to bring business to the store and others along A1A's S-curve.

Those businesses will miss the event's pick-me-up during a traditionally slow time of year.

"Last year, almost all of the local businesses reported excellent to record results," said Joe Hillner, president of the Island Partnership, an association of business owners. "Financially, that's going to be a bit of a hardship on those businesses."

Kirsten Flegel, Keenan's mom, was one of the customers providing business while her children enjoyed the Midnight Madness.

"I'm always hovering. I usually sit at the hotel, go out for a bite to eat," she said.

Island Water Sports will begin meeting with city officials immediately to work on its 2012 event, co-owner Linsey Cottrell said, so security and other questions can be ironed out to allow the street closure she said is needed. The store also needs time to solicit sponsors to help cover the added costs, she said.

And while the city allowed nearby businesses to sell alcohol outdoors during last year's event, Cottrell said she's not interested in having that again because it doesn't fit the event's youth orientation.

The kids can't wait.

"I've been going basically since my parents would let me, since about 12," said Aubriana Fumagali, 18, who grew up in Deerfield Beach. "You go hang out, enjoy the entertainment. Last year was incredible compared to all the other years."

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