Jun 14, 2017 | BY Chris Couve
From 14-16 July 2017, the city of Noli, Italy, will host the Green Surf Festival. Three days dedicated to SUP, surf & sustainability with the aim of reconnecting people back to nature, and giving all festival goers the inspiration, motivation, and most importantly, the tools to preserve & protect their environment.
In 2016, the small coastal town hosted the Noli SUP Race. The event attracted racers from across Europe and proved to be one of the best European SUP events of the year.
The Green Surf Festival is a natural evolution of last year’s event. Its founders, a small group of ocean & nature enthusiasts decided to expand the focus of the event.
Franz Orsi, local stand up paddler and coach of SUP’s Portuguese national team, wanted to run more than just another SUP race, and started to explore how the event could raise awareness of important sustainability issues.
The event will no doubt attract SUP & watersports enthusiasts, but also those wishing to learn more about sustainable living. The weekend is jam packed with outdoor activities; paddleboard trips, winch surf and surfskate sessions, SUP yoga, ‘Green Talks’ by leading sustainability experts, kids activities, music, great local food, and of course, international SUP races & fun competitions.
This year the Noli SUP Race will be one of the most important Open SUP events in Europe where international paddler will gather and compete both in the Elite race (long distance on Saturday and sprints on Sunday) and in the amateur races.
Sunday will be also dedicated to a charity event – Ride for the Cause, essentially a fun SUP paddle out open to everybody – intended to raise funds for social and environmental non-profits working both locally and internationally.
Franz Orsi : “We tried to bring together in an innovative and creative format watersports, entertainment and environmental culture. It is the first time that SUP and environmental issues come together in such a cool and fun way. Our festival in fact is all about being in sync with nature while having fun doing what we like the most: enjoy the ocean!”
The Green Surf Festival will be a sustainable eco-friendly event. The event team is working alongside Sustainable Surf to run a Deep Blue Event, focused on creating “Ocean Friendly” event, that sets a clear path for reducing environmental impacts, while also providing social benefits for the local community.
Deep Blue Events are independently verified, and require event organisers to report on five core categories of environmental impact; Waste, Energy, Transportation, Community Support & carbon footprint.
In addition to the main activities of the weekend, the Green Surf Festival will play host to a SUP industry gathering. The aim of this gathering, Protect Blue, coordinated by Linzi Hawkin, surfer and founder of SUPKids, is to bring together key players within the SUP industry to create a space to have good conversations about sustainability and explore how the industry can work together to lead the way.
The Green Surf Festival & Protect Blue are partnered with Starboard, one of the worlds’ leading stand up paddle board companies who are leading the sustainability charge in the SUP industry.
Svein Rasmussen, Chief Innovator, Starboard : “When the water sports industry collaborates and shares knowledge, we can boost an environmental awareness shift far beyond our community and accelerate the protection of the oceans.”
Both elements of the event are focused on collaboration, bringing together local companies, NGO’s and international brands, organisations & non-profits to work together and raise awareness of the most pressing environmental issues we face. Not forgetting to have fun on and off the water!