By John Vellines
Photos by Steven Kovich
Three years ago Bailey Rosen was just getting to know high school, the Suncoast was getting some tourists back from some Oil and Grease issues, and there wasn’t a SUP paddleboard in sight. Most people thought “SUP” meant “What’s happenin’ my Man?!”, and paddleboarding may be a rather controversial torture tactic. Good thing Bailey ain’t most people. Nope, in just a few moons, she’s become one of the premiere SUP Paddleboard athletes in the Nation, let alone Florida. Oh Yeah, 3 years ago she was 15.
Bailey’s a bit older now, on any given weekend there’s a hundred Paddleboards on our Beaches, and No Vacancy signs are aplenty. SUP is no trend, it’s a revolution, and Bailey is becoming a formidable ambassador. She’s amassing a large fan base and grabbing up sponsors from California to Hawaii. TheBeachesVisitorsGuide.com is stoked to get some sweet pics of our local hero, “The Paddle Princess.”
It takes about thirty seconds talking to Bailey to ascertain she is passionate about her sport, is a Loggerhead Turtles best friend, and knows more about beach life and preservation than the Sea Oats themselves. Yeah, Sure, she just got back from Hawaii where she paddled for 6 hours from the Isle of Molokai to Oahu. She’s won multiple accolades in various tournaments around Florida. She works with the legendary Suncoast Surf Shop teaching all the local surf girls SUP. What? College? .. she’s attending UCLA this fall. Local girl does good. She may take the whole damn world on one big Surfin’ Safari!