Scoot on over to that green lifeguard tower

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That’s where you’ll meet internet superstar Scot ‘Scooter of the Beach’ Ruberg and pick up on all the positive vibes he brings every morning he’s on duty

By Ned Steele

If you’ve got a famous beach, you’ll want a famous lifeguard too.
Happily, Siesta Key has both. The beach, you already know. The lifeguard? Meet Scot Ruberg, also known as Scooter of the Beach – a definite internet celebrity.
If you’re a Facebook regular, you may already know him. Some 71,000 followers around the world do.
He’s the creator and star of “Scooter of the Beach’s good morning beach report!” – the daily report, featuring an exuberant Scooter decked out in a glorious palm-leaf top hat, is always enthusiastic. It’s a way better wakeup than an alarm clock or a fresh cup of joe.

As we know, there’s never a bad day on Siesta Beach. Scooter of the Beach has become an Internet star by getting on Facebook every morning to tell us just why today is going to be a great day.
Consider Scooter’s commentary back on the chilliest day of January’s cold snap:
“It is cold-front perfection! The beach looks so good with no one on it! People are wearing parkas, multiple layers. Guess what? (Later in the day) we’re gonna see people peel off layers!”
A (very slightly warmer) day later: “It’s a great day, the sun is trying very hard to poke through! And tomorrow will be another 10 degrees!”

The next day: “It is cool. It is clear. It is clean. We have the solar heater cranking. Gaawwwd, I love this place!”
You get the idea: never a bad day, and Scooter wants you to enjoy every one of them. It’s not his job to see you out on the beach from his lifeguard stand; it’s his joy.
Through his Facebook presence he has become an unofficial ambassador of good will for Siesta Key.
And he draws a crowd of beach-goers that congregate around his domain, the green lifeguard stand, when he works. “It’s a win-win,” said one of them, Raymond Grimaldi. “It’s such a positive vibe he gives out that makes people feel good. It attracts people to him.”
It’s important to note that Scooter of the Beach is a serious lifeguard every minute of his daily shift. He has pulled countless swimmers out of trouble, rescued hundreds of beachgoers and boaters in distress. He has saved many lives, and inevitably he has seen some lives lost – more likely from medical emergencies on the beach than accidents in the water. (Because, he says, “We focus on prevention, prevention, prevention. When the water gets rough, we don’t let people get in past their belly buttons.”)
But before his shift – and before the daily hour of training required of all Sarasota County lifeguards – he does his thing as Scooter of the Beach. It’s a 2-minute video. Up it goes on Facebook, and people around the world smile.

Once, Scooter was just Scot Ruberg, ordinary lifeguard. A refugee from Illinois, he started at Siesta Beach in 1994, before the guard stands had colors. Back in 2017, he decided to adopt his online persona: “I like people; I like to spread positive energy,” he explained. “It just evolved.”
Scooter is now a robust 59 – currently the beach’s oldest lifeguard, though not the oldest ever. He passes the county’s annual recertification qualifiers every year, and he’s good to go for a few more.
But at some point, he realizes, it will be time to retire. With that day in mind, he is building his brand as Scooter of the Beach. You can expect to see that evolve and develop as he grows into the persona he has created. Scooter of the Beach will still be there pitching positive vibes when he finally steps down from that green tower. And when he does, it will still always be a beautiful day at the beach, and he will tell the world.
One more thing. Scooter wants you to know that he lives in Osprey with his wife, Mandy, and 12-year-old son. He wants you to know this, because once before he was interviewed for another publication and he neglected to mention her. He regrets it to this day.
So, Mandy, rest assured that Scooter loves you even more than he loves his job and his life as Scooter on the Beach.

Ned Steele
Author: Ned Steele

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