April 2
Back to Berck
We're back in Berck sur Mer for my ninth annual visit. According to the news reports, 400,000 people crowded onto the seawall of this small coastal town in North France to watch us fly. It is a pretty amazing feeling to launch a big kite and here the applause ripple through a crowd that big. We started the event with a banner parade through the narrow streets, led by the town marching band.

Berck Parade Berck Parade
For the first three days, the weather was perfect. Our team consisted of Pete Dolphin, Donna Knorr, Brooks Leffer, Chuck Sigal, Mike Gillard, Linda Underwood, and Kristi Bracken from Kites on Ice. (Many of you know that Berck was the original inspiration of the KOI event.)

We spent our days on the demonstration field with Rolf Zimmerman, Jos and Katia Valke, Karl Dambeck, and Peter Lynn. Their kites are more creative and amazing each year.

Valke Deltas Zimmerman Star Valke Jester

Bouncing Guys Flying Bears

At night we pile our gear into a small beach hut we called "Jabba" and head off into town to sample French hospitality and cuisine. A kitefliers beer tent remains open on the beach until midnight.

Peter Lynn and the Mega Ray

I've been spending time with the indefatigable Peter Lynn.

He has brought the Mega Ray from New Zealand and anchored it to two large tractors. The shadow of this monster protects us from the sun all day and then we make a point of disappearing into the beer tent when it is time to drag it down. That's ok. Peter has his own crew.

We are planing several new GKPI/Lynn collaborations already. If you want to be the first to receive one of the mini Trilobites, or Manta Rays, let us know.

Monday night, Scott Skinner arrives and brings thunder, lightening, and heavy rain with him. The weather clears in the morning for another perfect flying day. But by evening, the rain is back and Wednesday, it is clear, but blowing like stink. We huddle in the beer tent for shelter...

Throughout the week, fliers will continue to arrive for this ten day festival. We expect more kites and even more spectators when the sun returns for the weekend.

Check back in a few days for another Update from France. Meanwhile, Susie is staffing the office, sorting big shipments from the GKPI factory, and sending out lots of product to people like you. I'm doing business in the beer tent. Isn't delegation wonderful...

Big Madona Bols

National Kite Month

We now have over 300 events scheduled as part of the 2001 National Kite Month. That is more than ten kite festivals, displays or woekshops each day! It is incredible!!

Check out the NKM web pages at www.aka.kite.org. And when you have a minute, visit the GKPI postcard page . If you follow the links to "Create a Card" and then click on "Specials", you will find several Kite Month greetings that you can pass on to friends. Do kiting a favor and send out a few. Spread the word! And remember to have fun!!

*Back to the Update Index

*Back to Gomberg Kite Productions International