surfanje v Munchnu

surfanje v Munchnu
October 1, 2007 Kaja Cencelj

Surfing in Munich has a long tradition and the wave at the Eisbach is famous around the world. And now its destruction is looming on the horizon. Please give your support to prevent the demolition of this unique wave via adding your name to the digital petition list.

On September 15th, the AZ (German Newspaper) headline read “Secret Plan: Eisbach Wave will be demolished!”

The Newspaper implies with a random listing of incoherent statements a – not existing – direct connection between the ramp (which builds the wave), surfing and the tragic accidents of swimmers drowning in the Eisbach, which always happened some kilometres downstream of the wave. Rather there would be a relation between the accidents and alcohol and/or sunstroke than with the wave. Nevertheless the newspaper states plans of destructing the wave.

The reason for this illogical plan is the tragic drowning of a (not surfing) Australian Student this summer, 1 kilometre downstream of the wave. And the bad PR the city Munich was getting afterwards and thereby the city was forced to remove its promotion of the wave on its own website. The logic seems to be, what’s the use of a wave if you can’t use it for your own marketing purposes, therefore tear down the one-of-a-kind wave on the Eisbach….

Fact is: There has never any surfer drowned at the Eisbach. There are dangerous weirs and undercurrents in the Eisbach, but they are around 1 kilometre downstream of the wave and they are not caused by the wave!

Question is: If a targeted and explicit sign-board (in German and English) with an explained warning for swimmers about the dangerous spots (like the sandbank-signs at the ocean) is more useful than a general swimming- and surfing prohibition also on save parts of the Eisbach, which most people are not adhering to anyway. In addition a detailed sign could be placed at the wave, about the danger of the stones and that everybody is surfing at one’s own risk.

Fact is: Far more people injure themselves while inline skating, biking on bicycle lanes, skiing or in beer gardens than while surfing on the Eisbach wave or swimming in Eisbach.

Fact is: Surfing on the Eisbach can be dangerous, but just for the surfer himself and only if he is a beginner. And the surfers have a self-management in place, which makes sure that beginners are sent to a beginners-wave and most semi-good surfers voluntarily wear a helmet and lifejacket. Additionally the surf community is proactively spreading the information about the dangers of surfing on the wave in the Internet as well.

Fact is: Surfers at the Eisbach with their neoprene and surfboard are much better protected against drowning than swimmers. Which is also shown through the fact that when there is a red flag at the beaches of the Atlantic swimming is strictly forbidden, but surfing is allowed. Fact is: Surfing at the Eisbach has a long-rooted tradition and already started in the Seventies. Therefore the Eisbach is already known all around the world and German travelling surfers get asked about it wherever they go, even Australia, Morocco, Bali.

Fact is: Nearly all the people watching the surfers from the bridge are fascinated from the sport and make compliments and enjoy the performances.

Fact is: Eisbach-Surfing is an ecological equal-zero-emission sport at a natural spot. The possibility for Munich citizens of clean recreation without producing any pollution or noise! Nobody is getting harassed and nobody is complaining about it.

Fact is: Many Munich companies and stores (e.g. surfboard manufacturer, clothing shops, film productions and photographers) profit of the unique status of the surfing community in Munich.

Fact is: This sport is peaceful and free of charge. Therefore the access to the sport is easy and many young persons love to surf at the Eisbach sometimes even on a daily basis. Hence it would be a shame to close this downtown sport possibility and hinder the surfers in getting physically exhausted during sport rather than putting their energy in drugs and brawls. All surfers are thankful for every day the wave runs and they can challenge themselves and have a good time with friends.

Fact is: It would be a shame if the city which wants to apply for the Olympic Games is so contra sportsmanlike and would destroy this unique phenomenon. River surfing is a new and fast growing sport and all around the world the mass appeal is increasing day by day. Munich was one of the trendsetters in this movement and is now risking getting back to the bottom of the league.

You want to do something? It would be awesome if you could send this link to friends of yours and distribute those posters or flyers. Thanks a lot!

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