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Old 10-28-2014, 11:14 AM
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RickI RickI is offline
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We had the meeting at Adventure Sports Ft. Lauderdale, thanks for hosting the event guys!

There was a good turnout of about 35 people at the meeting. There were more folks present than I can easily name but a
few included Gio Serrano of Ft. Lauderdale Ocean Rescue, Jesse Cors of Liquid Surf & Sail, Neil Hutchinson of Slingshot, Toby Braeuer
of Kiteforum, Kent and Paula Marinkovic of Adventure Sports, Christophe Ribot of MKB, Bruno Perez of the Miami Beach Kiteboarding
Association, Luke Svanberg of Adventure Sports Ft. Lauderdale and many more. My sincere thanks to all who took time out of
their busy schedules to attend and participate.




Gio Serrano lead off following a short introduction identifying some of the problems the City and Ocean Rescue are confronting
with regard to kiteboarding. Some of the points Gio and others in the city and comments are presented below:




1. Kiteboarders must stay out of the area inside the buoys approximately 150 yards from shore.


Comment: Wind, wave conditions, kite and board size don't always readily allow kiters to do this. Under such conditions, kiters need
to go someplace else where nearshore restrictions don't exist or wait for more suitable conditions.



2. Some kiteboarders aren't listening to lifeguards and are showing disrespect.


Comment: Kiteboarding isn't a right but an easily lost privilege, ignoring authorities trying to preserve public safety is a very effective
way to bring on harsh restrictions. Working things out with the lifeguard is vastly better than bringing the police down as I understand
those responses are tabulated at City Hall and could readily be used against access in time.

3. Kiteboarders can't routinely ride waves inside the narrow access corridor but must ride beyond 150 yards and stay out there until time to come in.


Comment: There are places you can ride the waves, away from lifeguarded beaches, more crowded venues and away from buoyed
swim areas. Head there and don't try to ride inside at Tiki Beach or NE 16 St. in Pompano Beach where it isn't allowed.


4. Illegal parking on the offloading ramp during kiting sessions needs to stop. Ticketing and towing are obvious solutions, so please
spare yourselves that ordeal.

The kiting community needs to step up efforts at self-policing, promoting of sustainable kiteboarding practices at threatened venues
like Tiki Beach and NE 16 ST. in Pompano Beach. Blowing it off or letting someone else deal with it, maybe, will see us all shut out.
As Neil said, time to take the gloves off or as I said to collectively get off our butts have some tactful words with problem kiters.
Some will be responsive, others won't be but we need to start trying.



General discussion of these points and others followed with input from many in the group. Access and sustainability challenges at
various South Florida launches were discussed to raise awareness about the problems and solutions.



Some suggestions that came up included:

1. Approaching the City to see if a new kiteboarding area in the vicinity of lifeguard stands S1 and S2 could be arranged. This is to the
south of Tiki Beach, the beach is about three times wider plus there is a parking lot buffer between all this and A1A. There is a large
parking lot there making parking much easier and providing park revenues for the city, an important consideration. Kiters would still
have to ride out beyond 150 yards and stay out until time to come into the access corridor but there would be less conflicting vessel
traffic, a large lower populated zone to the south and a lot fewer problems on the beach. Folks are looking into this at present to
see if it would be feasible to put something together.



2. A few people suggested forming an advocate organization for kiteboarding, a kite club, association, call it what you will. The intent
would be to have people sign up for membership, agree to promote sustainable kiting practices, provide leadership to the kiting
community, formally intercede with threats to access, collect dues to form a legal war chest to defend access as necessary, improve
kiting practices and ability in the community and more. If well rated, effective insurance could be obtained at a reasonable premium
it would be great to add this into the membership package. There are existing groups out there which it would be great to have join
in on this collective effort. In the end, access starts and ends with what happens on local beaches. So local efforts are very important.
These steps and more was attempted with the FKA but participation was limited years back reducing the broad effectiveness of the concept.
Today, things may be different. I would be happy to assist in the formation of an effective organization if there is interest. Please provide
constructive input on this and your desire to participate in such an organization, thanks!



3. Many of us share common problems and solutions. In particular traveling kiters, be they from out of state or just down the road.
Kiters need to learn what restrictions and precautions exist at a riding area BEFORE they go there and to follow them. I am
assembling a database of such information for South Florida kiting areas now. Toby of Kiteforum indicated that he would be happy
to incorporate the information into his global kiteboarding spot database, http://locations.splocs.com/ Stay
tuned for updates on this. In time there will be an interactive map of spots with detailed information on rules for each.

4. Several requested that the proposed organization have a page on Facebook. This is very easily done although name changing
is more problematical once it exists. Facebook has broad, easy access but poor indexing and file retention (i.e. where is that post
and lost photos, etc.). So, a combination of a traditional website/forum in addition to a Facebook page is proposed.


I brought a handout which summarizes important points for working to preserving access at Ft. Lauderdale and Pompano Beach, see below:


(Please click on image twice for full size)

Please review this handout and take it to the beach, literally. None of these efforts will amount to anything unless we get
behind it and push to preserve our access. The more folks that buy in and show commitment, the easier it will be on all
of us and more time we can spend just on kiting, so please join in. Copies of this handout are available at Adventure Sports and Liquid Surf & Sail.





A good deal more than the above was discussed, if I left out things that should be brought up in this first summary, please let me know.


My parting shot


Let's pull together to keep things flying and thanks!


.
__________________
FKA, Inc.

transcribed by:
Rick Iossi

Last edited by RickI; 10-28-2014 at 01:45 PM.
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