The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio


June 9, 2014

Outdoors Insider, with Dale Sunderlin: ODNR beach safety classes on tap

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) announced today that three beach safety and rescue classes will be offered in Lake and Ashtabula counties Thursday through Saturday.

The classes are being sponsored by the ODNR Office of Coastal Management in cooperation with the Great Lakes Surf Rescue Project, Inc. (GLSRP).

“Safe and enjoyable recreation on Lake Erie is a priority for Ohio,” said Scudder Mackey, chief of the ODNR Office of Coastal Management. “Swimming in Lake Erie is not like swimming in a pool.  Currents formed by natural forces can create unpredictable conditions. We want Ohioans and visitors to know how to avoid potential hazards and how to respond in the event of an emergency.”

Rip currents, outlet currents and structural currents that form on Lake Erie can carry people away from shore out to open water. Many people exhaust themselves trying to fight the current by swimming into it toward shore. People caught in a current should let the current pull them out to open water, while trying to swim or float away from the current parallel to the shore.

Melissa Zirkle, mother of Jermaine, 13, who drowned after being pulled off shore by a current, contacted ODNR about sponsoring the beach safety classes and has helped organize the host locations.

“I didn’t know rip currents were possible in Lake Erie, I never realized until it was too late for my son,” Zirkle said. “Now I want to raise awareness and help others receive education about drowning prevention so they can safely enjoy the water.”

The beach safety class will teach techniques on what to do if you are caught in the various types of currents, how to recognize currents and hazards along the shore, what drowning looks like and how to safely rescue a swimmer.

The classes are free and are recommended for first responders, coastal residents, people who regularly go to the beach, lifeguards and people who frequently work along the shore and may be called upon to help during an emergency. Children are encouraged to attend the classes with an adult. Attendees do not have to enter the water and can observe the rescue portions of the training from the shore.

To register for a class, go to the GLSRP webpage:

Text Only
  • run VanHoy racing on

    Geneva track star Hailey VanHoy had a near unbelievable run of success during her final months running for the Eagles.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • Danielle Zip-ing along

    Just minutes after Geneva’s Danielle Nicholson holed out on the 18th green at the Gray Course at Ohio State University during her freshman year to win the 2011 Division I state championship, the recruitment process of where she would go to college began.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Maruna headed for Mount

    LeeAnn Maruna never really expected to play collegiate golf. She was so taken aback when the opportunity presented itself, she didn’t know how to respond. After all, the Grand Valley graduate had only been playing the game for a few years.

    July 23, 2014

  • Crate Late Models featured

    The Evergreen Lake Park Campground Crate Late Models, the premier class at Raceway 7, will be featured Friday night as they race for $1,000 to win.

    July 23, 2014

  • Norm He’s the Norm

    In the early part of the 20th century, as golf was taking off in popularity, it was not uncommon for boys to take up the game after becoming caddies.

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Don A Don McCormack column: The journey is what’s most important

    Unless you’ve been living under a rock the past couple of weeks, you’ve heard over and over and over how it’s been a half-century since one of Cleveland’s big three professional sports teams have won a championship.

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Murdick wins as Big Block Modifieds return

    The BRP Big Block Modifed Tour returned to Raceway 7 with 21 of the region’s fastest Modifieds turning out for the scheduled 35-lap event, the first for the Modifieds at the northeast Ohio speedplant since 2005, an event won by Todd Burley.

    July 21, 2014

  • Dale Outdoors Insider, with Dale Sunderlin: Chances for controlled waterfowl hunting

    Waterfowl hunters are invited to participate in special drawings for controlled hunting opportunities, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR), Division of Wildlife. The drawing dates and times are as follows:

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Kingsville gets it done

    In a rematch of a previous softball clash between the Kingsville 9-10-year-olds and those from Conneaut, Kingsville had settled thing quickly and decisively in a mercy-rule triumph.

    July 20, 2014

  • TD Club golf A Chris Larick column: TD Club hopes to score

    Though its life was never seriously threatened, the Ashtabula County Touchdown Club has suffered in recent years.

    July 20, 2014 2 Photos

Little League All-Stars July 1 to 12
AP NASCAR Lastest News
AP NASCAR Sprint Cup Schedule
AP NASCAR Sprint Cup Standings
AP Auto Racing Photos
West Side Shootout 2014
Ashtabula County at State Track Meet
Jefferson vs Akron St. Vincent St. Mary Regional Softball
District Track 2014
Jefferson District Softball Tournament
Bob Walters 50 Years
Geneva vs Perry Division II District Semifinal
Sports Week in Review May 12 to May 17
Sports Week in Review May 5 to May 10 2014
Sports Week in Review April 28 to May 3
Sports Video Archive
House Ads
AP Video