WILDWOOD – Lifeguards throughout the Mid-Atlantic states will merge on Wildwood’s beach July 20 to showcase their skills and vie to be named the winner of the United States Lifesaving Association’s 2017 Mid-Atlantic Regional Championship Lifeguard Craft Competition. The USLA’s membership is comprised of beach lifeguards and open water rescuers.

“We expect more than 80 individuals to compete this year,” said Wildwood Beach Patrol Captain Ed Schneider. Lifeguards will compete using rescue boards, surf boats and surf skis as they compete to qualify to go to the national championship that will be held later this summer.

Male and female participants will compete in a number of water craft events including surf boat heats and finals, board races, surfski heats and finals, American Ironman/Ironwoman heats and finals, Ironguard heats and finals and International Ironman/Ironwoman heats and finals.

The art and science of lifeguarding revolves around different skill sets that give guards the tools needed to expertly deal with emergencies as they arise. Athleticism is key to insuring public safety.

“Being competent in competition makes better lifeguards,” said Schneider. “If someone is in trouble they want an expert coming to save them. Competitions like these events foster that skill level.”

The one-day competition takes place Thur. July 20 from 11 a.m. – 4 p.m. on the beach at Lincoln Avenue. For more information or to register for the event, please visit www.wildwoodnj.org and click on the quick link for the Wildwood Beach Patrol.