Rupen Bhardwaj

The Association of Aquatic Professionals has scheduled an in-person conference for 2022.

The AOAP Conference & Exposition will take place Feb. 6-10, in St. Pete Beach, Fla. It once again co-locates with the Diversity in Aquatics Conference, which is set for Feb. 9-12.

“We want to continue to provide the very best, all-inclusive educational and networking experience for aquatic professionals and companies,” said AOAP CEO/Executive Director Juliene Hefter.

Organizers are adding new educational tracks, including Model Aquatic Health Code, Health Inspector, and Diversity and Inclusion.

Other highlights will include Aquatics International’s General Session, which includes an award ceremony and speaker. This time around, Lifeguard Authority Founder Joey Rusnak will pose the question: What defines a hero? Participants will learn to connect themselves with their superhero within, in recognition of the heroic work performed by lifeguards everyday.

Hefter said the group will monitor agencies such as the CDC to determine what protocols are appropriate at the time to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Organizers are considering color-coded wristbands for attendees to wear, showing what kind of interactions they're comfortable with. Red would direct others to keep a distance; yellow to encourage socially distanced conversations; green to say closer contact is fine.