North Texas Daily

WakePoolooza turns heads, raises awareness

WakePoolooza turns heads, raises awareness

October 22
22:26 2012

Trent Johnson / Staff Writer

With wakeboarding events being held across the nation, Denton finally dipped its toe in the sport’s waters as Fry Street hosted the first annual WakePoolooza event this past Saturday.

Professional wakeboarders were able to ignite the crowd while simultaneously being able to spread awareness of the quickly growing sport.

Photo by : Michelle Heath

WakePoolooza, presented by Administrative Professionals Conference Events and benefitting the UNT wakeboarding team, showcased athletes wowing spectators from 3 to 10 p.m. with an abundance of tricks that sent the wakeboarders airborne as they flipped and spun in numerous variations leaving the audience in awe.

In a 15-person competition, wakeboarders were pulled through two pools containing more than 50,000 gallons of water. In order to hold the event, Fry Street was closed for the first time in five years.

Wakeboarding professional A.J. Racinelli emerged from the field of 15 to take first place and the $750 prize.

“This event is really exciting,” attendee Martin Gentry said. “These guys definitely have an amazing skill set, plus it’s really interesting and creative.”

Though an event like WakePoolooza was the first of its kind in Denton, Natasha Hume, co-owner of Fry St. Tavern and APC Events, said that it was only a matter of time before this sort of event made its way into Mean Green country.

“The idea came from [Billabong representative] Matt Edmondson,” Hume said. “They’ve been doing them all over the nation including Dallas, and Emondson pitched the idea to the APC, and we really like it. Plus, with the sport being an up-and-coming one, we think this event brings it to life.”

With the UNT football game taking place last Tuesday, the first time event took center stage over the weekend, their hopes of competing turned to reality as the event exposed fans to the sport.

“It’s really helping us raise awareness for wakeboarding across campus,” said UNT Wake team member Aric Brabec, a business freshman. “This event shows people that ‘Wow, wakeboarding really is cool.’”

With the event’s aim of providing exposure to the UNT Wake Team, professional wakeboarder Cody Johnson said he feels the event will have more people interested in the sport.

Photo by : Michelle Heath

“This definitely brings awareness to the crowd,” Johnson said. “The sport provides people a chance to be out on the water and be involved in awesome events like this. I definitely think this will help the sport blow up.”

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