The 25th annual Bill Howarth Women’s Lifeguard Invitational will showcase many of South Jersey’s top female beach patrol athletes at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday at the Suffolk Avenue beach in Ventnor.
The four races are the doubles row, the swim, the singles row and the four-person surf dash.
All the beach patrols of the South Jersey Lifeguard Chiefs Association will be there except for Cape May Point and North Wildwood.
The Howarth Invitational is the fourth and final all-women’s lifeguard competition of the summer.
“The South Jersey patrols have tremendous female lifeguards, and this is a great way for them to show off their skills,” said Meghan Holland, a Ventnor Beach Patrol Lieutenant and the race director. “It’s the same week as the South Jersey Championships (which is Friday in Longport), and we (the Ventnor patrol) think of it as the Women’s South Jerseys.”
If you’re not too busy Friday night, do yourself a favor and head over to Longport for the 8…
The event honors the late Bill Howarth, a former Ventnor Beach Patrol Captain and athlete, and an Atlantic City High School girls swimming coach. He died of cancer in 2016, and the event, formerly known as the Cape Atlantic Women’s Lifeguard Invitational, was renamed in his honor.
Wildwood Crest won the team title of the Longport Women’s Lifeguard Invitational, the event most similar to the Howarth Invitational, on July 10.
Wildwood Crest’s Adrienne Bilello won the swim at Longport, and she’s back for Wednesday’s competition.
Margate twins Amanda and Kristine Auble won the doubles row at Longport, and Ocean City’s Stephanie Hauck was first in the singles row. They also return.
The Sea Isle City surf dash team won at the Longport Invitational, but Longport took the dash at the Ocean City Beach Patrol Women’s Invitational on July 25.
Sea Isle is the defending champion of the Howarth Invitational. The Aubles won the 2018 doubles row.
Avalon’s Reilly Bonner was the singles row winner last year, and she also returns. Sea Isle won the surf dash.
Holland said all of the Howarth Invitational’s judges will be female lifeguards or alumni who are former participants in the event.