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This Saturday, Formentera welcomes fifth Formentera triathlon, site of Balearic championship for olympic triathlon format

Foto presentacio v triatloToday in the conference hall of the Antoni Blanc sport centre, CiF sports secretary Jordi Vidal unveiled details about an event set to descend on the island this Saturday, October 7: the fifth Triatló Illa de Formentera, or “Formentera Triathlon”. Unisportconsulting is putting on the event, and the company's chief, Manuel Hernández, plus Núria de la Torre, head of marketing of sponsoring company Trasmapi, joined Vidal for the presentation.

Vidal highlighted something special about this year's event: the Balearic Islands triathlon federation wants it to double as the regional olympic triathlon championship. Whoever walks way victorious from this Saturday's contest will also be named Balearic champion of olympic triathlon competing. In addition, Vidal welcomed the projected participation of Ana Caseres, author of “Mamá Triatleta,” a book which every participant will receive for free.

According to Hernández, roughly 300 athletes will take part in the event, with an even split between those in the sprint and olympic formats. About 230 have signed up so far. Sprint and group participants will set off at 2.30pm, first swimming 750 metres (m) in Es Pujols bay before covering 20K on bicycle and the final five on foot. The starting shot of the olympic trial is scheduled for 4.15pm. Those athletes will start by swimming 1,500m, switch to two wheels for 40K and then finish up with a 10K run.

Signups are open through tomorrow morning on the elitechip website, or can be done in person the day of the event, 9.30am to 1.00pm in Es Pujols's plaça d'Europa, during which time participants are asked to come pick up numbers.

Road closures
The road linking Es Pujols and la Savina will be closed to vehicle traffic near the Rosa Mar entrance from 2.20pm to 7.00pm. It will reopen for roughly thirty minutes at 3.30pm, then remain closed until cyclists pass at approximately 7.00pm. Vidal apologised to residents, who will need to take alternate routes, for the inconvenience caused.

In addition, Secretary Vidal thanked Trasmapi for its fifth straight year of support for the event. The Formentera Triathlon is part of Discover Formentera in October, an initiative aimed at boosting off-season visits to the island. The Balearic tax office has also provided help for the event, along with local sponsors like Viatges Es Freus, Carbónicas Tur, Frufor, Pro-auto, Autos La Mola, Formotor, Motorent Pujols and Blue Bar. Vidal also gave thanks to the Guardia Civil, the civil protection service, Formentera's local police and other volunteers for making the triathlon possible.

Formentera schoolchildren hear case for recycling glass

Campanya ecovidrio fotoEnvironment secretary Daisee Aguilera was joined by Iván Tolsà, a spokesman for Ecovidrio, at a presentation of a recycling campaign hitting local schools this week. Pupils from two of the island's schools—in La Mola and Sant Francesc's Mestre Lluís Andreu—will participate in activities related to “Suma vidre, a l'escola!” (or, translated literally into English, “Adding glass, at school!”), which began September 28 and is scheduled to conclude October 6.

The glass-object recycling bins popping up in recent weeks at island schools are part of a double effort, first, to raise awareness about the importance of recycling glass and the direct environmental impact of doing so, and second, to encourage consumers to buy glass-packaged products, which, considering their 100% rate of recapture, represent of the cleanest options. Educators have attempted to shine a light on the different kinds of glass that can be recycled, part of a wider effort to prevent non-recyclable objects from winding up in recycling bins.

All the recyclables brought in so far will be picked up tomorrow. Whichever school manages to generate the most kilos of glass per pupil will take part in a special arts and crafts workshop on Friday. The fruits of participants' labours will be donated to the Save Posidonia Project. Secretary Daisee Aguilera highlighted the importance of educating children about recycling and hailed the initiative's related activities.

The nonprofit group Ecovidrio has been responsible for glass recycling in Spain since 1998. The company oversees the recycling process from start to finish, including differentiated collection, transport, processing of glass receptacles and their successive transformation into objects of commercial value.

Members of island special needs group spend day with families on accessible sailboat

Formentera vela 30 sep 4The Formentera Council's Office of Sport has partnered with APNEEF, an association for Eivissa and Formentera residents with special needs, in organising an outing with children from the group. Participants will be taken for a ride at sea on a special accessible sailboat which the administration acquired last summer.

A group of ten—toddlers plus accompanying family members—came out for the day-long event on Saturday, September 30, which consisted in a three-hour tour of a stretch of Formentera's coast. Concurrently, it was an opportunity for the children to discover sailing in family.

According to CiF sports secretary Jordi Vidal, outings like last Saturday's are what the escola de Vela, or “sailing school,” is all about: “Bringing people on board with inclusive, recreational activities at sea”. The specially-designed watercraft was bought thanks to support from Obra Social La Caixa.

Vidal says that, depending on interest, more such activities could be on the horizon. He also hinted at similar programming for patients of the island's dependent care centre, or centre de dia. The outing had the support of Club Surf Formentera.

Save Posidonia Project festival: hundred plus activities to educate people, save seagrass meadows

Foto presentacio sppOfficials gathered today to unveil details about the Save Posidonia Project festival. Scheduled to take place October 12-15, the four-day programme of over one hundred activities encompasses sports, culture, education and the environment. Tourism secretary Alejandra Ferrer, on hand for the morning presentation, framed the festival as part of something bigger—Discover Formentera in October—which she predicted would be “a fun-filled event for many tourists”.

Water sports
An organised ride round the island will unfold in stages and four different modalities: kayaking, kitesurfing, windsurfing and paddle surfing. Other activities will be related to meditation and yoga.

Show in town centre
Most of the activities will play out in Sant Francesc's town centre. Between plaça de la Constitució, avinguda Porto Salè and jardí de Ses Eres, stands will play host to arts and crafts displays featuring posidonia seagrass.

There will also be a fashion show engineered by local designers. The event will culminate with a “subaquatic runway show” starring two very special models: Gemma Mengual and Cristina Piaget.

For four days, the town square will be transformed into audiovisual space featuring a rotating lineup of environment-related projections. Other shows, which will run the gamut from sustainable mobility and live painting performances to community beach cleanups and sailboat gatherings, will all have one thing in common: sustainability.

Kids' workshops
Of course, it wouldn't be a festival without children, which is why Thursday to Saturday a spate of kids' workshops aim to use a blend of fun and education to get their message across. There will even be a cohort of Mallorca school children here to better understand environmental sustainability.

The Posidonia Forum happens Friday, October 13, in the municipal cinema. The programme will feature conferences and debates with world-class organisations, government administrations and personalities dedicated to tourism and the environment. Later gatherings will include roundtable discussions on the future of tourism and the environment on Formentera.

Environment councillor Daisee Aguilera said the gathering was focussed on “taking stock of posidonia conservation efforts and planning for how the task will look moving forward”.

83,000m2 of sponsored seaweed
Donations to date put the area of adopted posidonia meadows at 66,656 square metres (m2). With an additional 17,000m2 already pledged and set to be added this week, a grand total of 83,000m2 has been safeguarded. Money raised till November 1 will go to fund posidonia conservation projects. Donations can still be made at https://www.saveposidoniaproject.org/es/, at a cost of one euro per metre squared.

Conditions of entry are available on the Balearic employment office, or BOIB, website, as well as the home pages of the Council and the Save Posidonia Project. Applicants will have two months to submit project proposals beginning November 1, when donations close and a definitive fundraising total is established. Projects will be split into three categories: environmental stewardship, awareness and science. Winning projects will be chosen by an expert panel.

Two tour operators—Germany's TUI Care Foundation and Dutch company Corendon—are studying the possibility of covering 100% of the cost of two Save Posidonia Project initiatives.

The 2017 Save Posidonia Festival has been scheduled to coincide with the celebration of Year of Sustainable Tourism. Though conservation fundraising is one priority, another—and no less critical—is hammering the message about vital safeguards for posidonia oceanica, tourism that is respectful of the local ecosystem and taking steps to insure Formentera remains a sustainable destination.

For his part, tourism advisory board chief Carlos Bernús hailed the more than twenty individuals of ten different backgrounds expected to be covering the event. Most of those that have expressed interest in the project represent nationalities that visit Formentera already, such as the Italians, Germans, French, Dutch, etc. “The Formentera brand will be about natural heritage, conservation and sustainability,” said Bernús.

At gala, Formentera honours icons of local sport

Premis esport formentera 201710Tonight Formentera celebrated its 2016/2017 Gala de l'Esport, an evening to recognise and pay tribute to individuals, organisations, clubs and private entities that dedicated to sports.

Awards went to:

-Best sportsman/sportswoman in the 2016/2017 season. Mateo Sanz, for qualifying for the 2016 Rio Olympics, winning seventh in the world and fourth in Europe for RSX windsurfing.

Other nominees in the category included Andrea Romero (athletics), Marcos Contreras (football), Gemma Lairón (tennis), Mia Chastaing (judo) and Jacobo Domínguez (trap shooting).

-Best sponsor. Formentera's civil protection league, or Protecció Civil, for the commendable work of their volunteers, allowing sporting events to be celebrated locally. Without them such events could not happen.

Other nominees in the category included Trasmapi, Balearia, Carbónicas Tur, Frufor and Caixabank.

-Best sporting association. SD Formentera, for securing a place in Second Division B and qualifying for the round of 32 in the Copa del Rey, a match that will pit the club against a First Division team for the first time in history.

-Most renowned promotor of sport. Eugenio de la Dueña Medina (sixth dan in judo), for a 30-year dedication to teaching and promoting judo on the island.

The jury voted to give posthumous special mention to Josep Marí i Antoni Torres, for a lifetime on the SD Formentera team, on the players' roster and on management.

The jury, made up of 15 representatives from different sports groups and political groups with representation on the Formentera Council plenary, was chaired by the secretary of sport. The administration's sitting president acted as the jury's honorary chair. The jury met July 17 in the hall of ceremonies, or Sala d'Actes. The awards show took place this evening, Friday September 29, and was also attended by the Balearic minister of sport, Fanny Tur. 

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