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Old 05-23-2008, 03:55 PM
kent kent is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 430

It's good to have comments by both partners of the school in question. Francisco, I couldn't agree more, we need good beach ambassadors like you and Ken to step it up. If you do, this would be greatly appreciated by all. The days of relying on Tim to police the area to keep it open for all are over.

It's funny, I do remember the good old days at Crandon when you were there keeping an eye on things. As I remember someone was removed from the park and banned from teaching there partially due to a physical altercation. I also remember the patrol days at Hobie as well. It ended the same way, altercation with police intervention. The term “kite mafia” coming from your mouth is ironic. I am hoping that Ken’s well constructed words about cooler heads prevailing will help you to avoid history becoming your future again.

This has nothing to do with brands as you seem to imply. Because my business isn't one that can be roll up and closed overnight, I am very interested in protecting our riding locations. Both you and Ken seem to have grown your business nicely over the last year and this is a good thing as it benefits my business as well. In truth, I wish you the best of luck. Additionally, Big Kite Miami, and Camillo's operations have flourished. Although neither of these schools uses Cabrinha, I have nothing but respect for Miguel at Big Kite Miami and Camillo. Miguel in particular has always conducted himself professionally and is an asset to our Miami kiting community.

Why is Hobie a bad place to teach?

#1. No safety barrier. In truth even being able to kite at this location is sketchy, let alone teach.
#2. Heavy traffic. As this is the only location in Southeast Florida to ride in any Southwest to West winds, it is very over crowded by kite riders. Secondly, on weekends in particular there are way too many beach goers on the causeway. The wind is on shore and any runaway kite or kiter poses tremendous risk to these innocents. Lastly, when I say traffic, I mean traffic. I have personally witnessed 3 people hit cars with their bodies at this location, not to mention that girl that fractured her skull and lacerated her liver on the wooden posts. This area requires the highest concern for kiters and spectators safety.
#3. In Miami, both West and Southwest winds are gusty and unpredictable. It is a challenging task for any rider to handle these conditions, let alone a newbie taking instruction. Any qualified instructor should recognize this and act accordingly.

In the future, I would strongly recommend allowing Ken to be the spokesman for your company as your comments about Alex’s death truly allow others to peer into your nature and see the total lack of respect you have for this sport. Alex’s death is partially responsible for my concern for your students learning at this location. All of us have made mistakes both large and small, we need to learn from these errors and not propagate an environment where by we perpetuate bad kite behavior.

Once again, I kindly ask that you refrain from teaching at Hobie Beach as it is unacceptable on so many levels. Like all other issues this too will blow over. Let’s make the right decision and do the right thing. As I said in my previous post, to avoid uncomfortable instances such as this in the future I think that it would be good to gather the shops and schools doing business in Miami for an industry meeting. Let’s shoot for mid-week after this holiday. We can meet at Berries in the Grove to hammer out some guidelines that are acceptable to all. Let me know if this work for you and we’ll schedule a meeting.


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