Coquina Beach earns "superstar" status

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BRADENTON BEACH, FLA. - Coquina Beach can now claim superstar status. It is one of 35 superstar beaches in the United States because of it's high water quality.

“The Natural Resources Defense Council has done some sampling of water qualities consistently around this country at recreational beaches and areas such as this and they have found that Manatee County beaches on Anna Maria Island are some of the most pristine, top ten or better of island beaches that you can find and visit and recreate,” said Manatee County Director of Parks and Natural Resources, Charlie Hunsicker.

The Natural Resources Defense Council declared Coquina Beach a superstar because it has consistently met national water quality benchmarks for five years running. Hunsicker is not surprised our beaches test well. He says water quality has been a top priority for county leaders over the last 30 years.

“We've had almost a half a million new people move to this area since 1980 and yet the water quality in Sarasota Bay has actually improved over that time. Not to many places around the United States can make that claim and I think that translates into what we see here on the beach.”

Coquina Beach is the top beach choice for many locals.

“I love Coquina because it is clean and it has life guard stands and I am here with my family,” said Marion Durham.

“It is nice here, the sand, the water is nice and clear. It is our favorite place to come. Sometimes it is busy but it is like this and we can come and pick out a perfect spot,” said Beth Bucker.

Sharon Hessenauer enjoys watching all the marine life attracted to clean water off Coquina Beach.

“You've got a natural reef right off here with all the fish life and a lot of times we can just sit here and watch the dolphins, the tarpon even the manatees.”

The next big event for Coquina Beach after July 4 is Symphony on the Sand 2014 scheduled for November 8th. The music will be performed by the Anna Maria Concert Chorus and Orchestra.