High water puts damper on Rock Aqua Jays' first performance

Water ski team canceled Sunday show

High water puts damper on Rock Aqua Jays' first performance

JANESVILLE, Wis. - High water levels on the Rock River have caused a local water ski team to cancel its first performance.

The Rock Aqua Jays Water Ski Show Team normally starts its season the Sunday of Memorial Day weekend, but with the recent rains, team officials say the river water is too high.

“Our docks are currently underwater. We don’t have a beach to land on. The rock wall, we can’t see,” President Ben Kopp said. “So it’s just not safe conditions to ski our skiers into.”

He said canceling the annual kickoff show has become the new normal. The water ski team also had to cancel last year’s performance.

“I’m hoping to get back in the water, and be able to put on entertaining shows and do our normal summer life,” Kopp said.

While the Rock Aqua Jays will be off the water over Memorial Day weekend, the Rock County Sheriff’s Office will have boat patrols on the water.

“Specifically what they’re going to be looking for is to make sure that you have enough life vests on the boat, and not only do you have enough life vests but that they fit the people that you have on the boat,” Sgt. Kimberly Litsheim said. “You can’t have five adult vests and two children on the boat. You’d have to have the two children’s vests as well.”

She said the higher water means the current moves faster and there’s more debris in the water.

“It’s important to keep in mind, as well, that there’s going to be other boaters out there,” Litsheim said. “We want to ensure everybody’s safe over this holiday weekend.”

The entire Rock River has been under a slow no wake order since May 14. The Sheriff’s Office said the order will be lifted once the river falls below 8.5 feet at the gauge in Afton.

The Rock Aqua Jays have free water ski shows at 7 p.m. every Sunday and Wednesday through Labor Day. Kopp said he hopes to have the first show June 3.

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