Clearwater, Florida - Waves of people hit Clearwater Beach Friday to play in the waves.
"They're totally awesome," says 8-year-old Aaron Leon, holding a boogie board.
After the clouds, rain, and wind of Thursday, the Shumans family and their friends couldn't wait to wade into this beautiful beach day. But Tropical Storm Andrea did leave behind some rough surf and moms were keeping a close watch.
"The surf is really unpredictable today, so I've been able to be right there and keep our eyes on them at all times," said Stacey Shumans.
Red flags flapped in the wind warning swimmers to use caution. And double red flags signaled a closed section of beach near Pier 60, because lifeguards didn't want the strong wave action to push swimmers into the pilings. They blew their whistles and waved people out of the area.
Dangerous rip currents are also a possibility during and after a storm, so lifeguards were also keeping watch for signs of those--a break in the waves or a flow of seaweed away from shore.
When it comes to rip currents, Beach Supervisor JP Atherholt offers this advice.
"It's a stream of water rushing away from the shore taking you out to sea," says Atherholt. "If you get in one of those, what you want to do is not swim against it, because it's like being on a treadmill; you're just working hard and not going anywhere. You want to swim parallel to shore and get out of the rip current and then swim in."
With the sun finally shining, on Friday the beach was bustling. But fun in the sun doesn't last long if something goes wrong. And on a day like today, even 5-year-old Baylie Shumans knew what she had to do.
"The waves are rough," she said. "I've needed to listen to my mom."