Aquatic Center to host free kids’ life jacket giveaway on Saturday in Mission Beach, San Diego

Mission Bay Aquatic Center (MBAC), in partnership with the California State Parks Division of Boating and Waterways, will host a free life jacket giveaway for kids in recognition of National Safe Boating Day, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., Saturday, May 17 at 1001 Santa Clara Place in Mission Beach.

Other free activities will include a life jacket trade-in, used equipment sale, kayak and stand up paddleboard rentals, and a stand up paddleboard race sponsored by REI. “No matter your skill level, swimming ability, or boating experience, you should always wear a lifejacket while on the water,” said MBAC Director Kevin Straw. “We are excited that the Division of Boating & Waterways is able to help us provide life jackets for the community so that families are able to safely enjoy Mission Bay.”

The U.S. Coast Guard reports that in 2012, almost 71 percent of all fatal boating accident victims drowned and 85 percent were not reported as wearing life jackets.

The MBAC offers classes, events and rentals in wakeboarding, surfing, sailing, kayaking, stand-up paddling, windsurfing, and rowing. It is also home to The Watersports Camp, a YMCA sponsored youth watersports day camp for kids, ages 6-17. The solar-powered LEED-certified facility is operated by Associated Students of San Diego State University and the UC San Diego Recreation.

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