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Date of Issue: June 15, 2006

Beach bash a bust in Bradenton Beach

coquina cops
coquina cops
coquina cops
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 St.

Petersburg, Sarasota and Arcadia were expected to attend.

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.

More 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.