WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - The Beach Blast at Wrightsville Beach is an annual back-to-school tradition for students at UNCW.
Tuesday, college students filled the beach around Crystal Pier from 11:00 AM until 3:00 PM.
"It's a great way to end the summer," said student Matthew Mobray.
Freshmen and returning students could take part in activities like surf lessons and beach volleyball while enjoying free music and food.
In previous years, some students would celebrate the end of summer by consuming alcohol. Now, security guards and Wrightsville Beach police officers check bags and patrol the beach to make sure it is alcohol free.
"Since we have gone to the plan we use now, everything has gone very smooth the last three years," said John Carey.
Even without the booze, students said the event is a terrific way to meet new faces.
"Everyone is cool, and everyone is laid back," said Jennifer Covert. "I'm looking forward to getting to know people. Everyone says you make your lifelong friends in college."
After the celebrations, UNCW sponsored a Beach Sweep from 4:00 - 6:00 PM to ensure there was no trash left on the beach.
For a full list of UNCWelcome events click here.