Beach bash a bust in Bradenton Beach
|Cops were visible on the water and on horseback at Coquina Beach. Islander Photos: Paul Roat
A vigorous, high-profile law enforcement presence chilled an event at
Coquina Beach last Friday that at one time was expected
to draw upwards of 1,000 people.
Of course, the fact that Manatee County
officials also canceled the rap music event also played
a role in the demise of the event.
Bradenton Beach Police learned of the Friday
beach festival several weeks ago and contacted Manatee
County. A meeting ensued, and it was determined that “Chill” Johnson had reserved a picnic
pavilion at the southeast end of Coquina Beach.
However, police were informed
that the event would include a photo shoot for a music
video, a bikini contest, rap music and that people from as far away as
Petersburg, Sarasota and Arcadia were expected
County officials scratched the event permit
for the pavilion. Law enforcement officials, deciding
to be pro-active in case the word did not get out that the party was
not to be, mobilized Friday morning.
than 20 Manatee County Sheriff’s
Office patrol cars, four mounted units, other law enforcement departments and
boats converged on the site.
And no one showed up for the party.