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NEWS BLOG

Foundation News

You may know him as the man behind the most epic photos in water skiing history or as the showman who set Cypress Gardens on fire back in the day. You may call him Lynn or Nova, or if you're like us, you call him HERO.


Lynn Novakofski is being inducted into the 2024 International Water Ski & Wakeboard Federation (IWWF) Hall of Fame, and he will be honored at this year's USA Water Ski & Wake Sports Hall of Fame Ceremony on April 6th at the Nora Mayo Hall in Winter Haven, Florida. Lynn is a legend and a Show Skiing "Pioneer." But forget the covered wagon. Lynn could do anything on the water and has spent all his life promoting water skiing.

This guy is special.


Lynn was inducted into the USA Water Ski & Wake Sports Hall of Fame in 2009 and hasn't stopped contributing and making a difference. Here is his IWWF Hall of Fame Nomination.



Lynn Novakofski, A.K.A. "Nova,” hails from Minocqua, Wisconsin.  He kickstarted his waterskiing journey with the Min-Aqua Bats Waterski Shows. After military service, he thrived as a skier at Cypress Gardens, Florida, excelling in show skiing and competition, even earning a podium spot at the Senior Masters  Tournament.  Lynn elevated show skiing by introducing innovative concepts and urging skiers to push boundaries. He emphasized athleticism in female skiers,  integrated dance and ballet, and collaborated with a figure skating coach. He was a pioneer in promoting the 360-degree swivel ski and swivel ski ballet, pairs,  doubles, and strap doubles, which expanded the ski show repertoire.  As Cypress Gardens’ show director, Lynn organized competitions, inspired skiers, and fostered skills. His annual “road shows” boosted Cypress Gardens’  global impact.  He was a key figure in the National Show Ski Association, spent 22 years at Cypress Gardens, and contributed to SeaWorld of California.  Lynn’s legacy includes the “Lynn Novakofski” outstanding male skier award and the prestigious “Nova” award for top performers within World Entertainment.  His ongoing influence is felt yet today through his remarkable photography,  social media, and challenges to skiers worldwide. Lynn’s authoritative voice by the lake remains a defining presence, leaving an immeasurable impact on water ski shows globally.


Lynn joins several other 2024 Inductees from around the world who will be inducted at various World Championships this year. The IWWF International Hall of Fame recognizes, appreciates, and understands the incredible contribution each recipient has made to their discipline, community, clubs, federations, confederations, the world, and the IWWF.

The IWWF Hall of Fame can be seen in its entirety in our museum in Davenport, Florida, or online at https://iwwf.sport/international-hall-of-fame/  and our website: https://www.usa-wwf.org/iwwf-hall-of-fame


Huge Congratulations to Lynn! We can't wait to celebrate with him in April!


TO BUY TICKETS FOR THE CEREMONY GO HERE. 


Established in 1968, the USA Water Ski & Wake Sports Foundation celebrates the history of all towed water sports and promotes these sports through our Scholarship Programs and the Water Ski & Wake Sports Hall of Fame.



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All but a few collegiate water ski teams are self-funded, with no assistance from the colleges/universities.  Teams are using old equipment, traveling long distances to compete, and have training costs of gas and insurance.


The Foundation has established a fund from which grants may be awarded to collegiate teams.  Funds will be used for unreimbursed team expenses such as equipment, travel (air, hotels, transportation), entry fees, and training expenses (boat gas, coaching, lake rental).   



Collegiate Water Ski Teams may apply year-round.  A small committee will review each application and decide if a grant will be given out two weeks after receiving the application.  The Grant Committee Chair will inform the team and the Foundation treasurer, and the funds will be sent to the team as soon as possible!

APPLY NOW: Download the application from our website and email the form to usawwf.grants@gmail.com



DONATE NOW: Support Student-Athletes by contributing to the fund


OR Make checks payable to USA Water Ski & Wake Sports Foundation, “Team Grant" in the memo.

Donations up to $2,500                                         Donations over $2,500

USA-WWF                                                                       USA-WWF

12961 Lerida Street                           6039 Cypress Gardens Blvd, #481

Coral Gables, FL 33156                                                 Winter Haven, FL 33884

PayPal to Donations@USA-WWF.org (Memo: "Team Grant")

QUESTIONS? EMAIL Brenda at usawwf.grants@gmail.com


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Dear USA Water Ski & Wake Sports Foundation Members,


As the new year arrives, we thank members and sponsors for all the support in 2023. With your help, we are financially sound and can celebrate water skiing and wake sports through our many programs and events. Please consider renewing your membership or making a donation online HERE.


The USA Water Ski & Wake Sports Hall of Fame Museum is open from 8-5 pm every day.

The USA Water Ski & Wake Sports Hall of Fame Museum has been located at the Visit Central Florida Welcome Center for more than three years, thanks to the support of Visit Central Florida and Polk County Sports Marketing. They are good partners in our efforts to celebrate water skiing's past and support the future. If you have not visited the museum's new location at 101 Adventure Court in Davenport, Florida, make it happen today! It's a beautiful presentation of water skiing's history.


Kendra Nathan, 2023 Barbara Bolding Scholarship Recipient and Foundation Member

Our College Scholarship Program awarded tens of thousands of dollars this year to water sports student-athletes, and we anticipate even more money being handed out in 2024. Encourage all the young water skiers you know to apply before April 1. For a list of our scholarships and how to apply click HERE or consider donating to our scholarship fund.


The foundation has also established a Collegiate Team Grant Fund.  Funds will be used for unreimbursed team expenses such as equipment, entry fees, and training expenses. College Water Ski Teams can apply all year for financial assistance, and funds will be sent to the team as soon as possible! For more information, click HERE.


Correct Craft will no longer be operating the Elite Cable Park in Auburndale

We had some challenging news for our foundation as the year ended. Correct Craft terminated its lease for the Elite Cable Park in Auburndale, Florida. We're now putting the property we own up for sale. We will keep you posted on what happens.


The Museum Artifact Committee spent much of the past year going through the many items never displayed in the museum, which had been in a cold storage facility. After much work, the committee rescued these remaining items and sold them to a collector who will be displaying them at his new water ski-themed restaurant in Orlando, Florida.


The USA Water Ski & Wake Sports Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony is scheduled for April 6, 2024, at Nora Mayo Hall in Winter Haven, Florida. Elaine Heller Fatla, Joe Knapp, Alex Lauretano, Jason Lee, Dennis Longo, and Dusty Schulz will be honored. Our event includes IWWF Hall of Fame Inductees Janifer Ellis, Dallas Friday, and Cathy Williams. For more information and to purchase tickets to attend the festivities, click HERE.


YOUR FINANCIAL SUPPORT MAKES ALL OF THIS POSSIBLE!

Please see our website and the latest copy of The Water Skier Magazine for more details about what we’re doing.  We’re looking forward to success in 2024.

-Ed



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