The Antibes Lifeboat is hosting an Open Weekend on Saturday 14 May and Sunday 15 May in Antibes at Port Vauban and plage Gravette.
The Lifeboat volunteers are on callout 24/7 and are all incredibly hard working and deserve as much support as possible. I’d love them to get some more exposure as their roles and importance to many towns here is grossly underestimated especially with so much maritime recreation and coastal activities that take advantage of this great French Riviera climate.
Typically, their call outs involve anything from towing stranded boats to cutting mooring lines from jammed propellers to saving lives by rescuing people from sinking vessels.
Unfortunately, a percentage of their work is unnecessary as recreational boaties or water sports enthusiasts head out on the water ill-equipped or without adequate training for navigational or communication aids and the Lifeboat gets called into action to save the day. If it wasn’t for the Lifeboat, the outcome for many of these people would be dire, even fatal in some cases.
Fundraising for a great cause
Please drop by the Open Weekend in Antibes and show your support – it is family-friendly, both the Capitainerie Quay (where the Harbour Master’s Office is) and plage Gravette are flat and have plenty of room for baby strollers and afterwards the kids can play on the beach or grab an ice cream.
Personally, I’m putting a call out to all the expat Aussies and Kiwis who make up a huge proportion amongst the professional yachting community in Antibes. Aussies and Kiwis are some of the most faithful and generous supporters of the lifeboat, however if your season is just starting and you can’t make the Open Weekend there are permanent donation boxes at various spots in Antibes Old Town including the Blue Lady Pub and Geoffreys of London, so donate the cost of one pint or your money for that jar of Vegemite and drop in your spare change as it all makes a difference.
Additionally, the Riviera Fitmums group are selling SNSM (French Lifeboat Service) identity bracelets with all proceeds going to the Antibes Lifeboat – they are superb for beach safety, school excursions, theme parks etc in case your little one wanders off. Just €5 for 10 bracelets (a range of colours are available), I’ve ordered some for my son’s class. To order some you can send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
THE WEEKEND PROGRAMME
All weekend from 10am-5pm at the Capitainerie Quay, there will be:
- A stand selling drinks and merchandise with sales benefitting the Lifeboat and day-to-day operations
- Raffles, including a mini raffle to win a trip on the Lifeboat outside of call outs
- Music performances from the Chorale du SRA and Antibes Music School
- Demonstrations of the life raft (after rescue demonstrations)
- Possibility to look around the lifeboats tied up on the visitors quay next to the Capitainerie
Saturday 14 May
11am : Esplanade de la Gravette – Rescue demonstration (transferring passengers)
2pm-4pm: Esplanade de la Gravette – Helicopter visit from the French Naval Air Service (landing and take off visible from the remparts)
4pm: Esplanade de la Gravette remparts – Demonstration of heli-winch in the sea
Sunday 15 May
11am : Esplanade de la Gravette – In-water rescue demonstration (towing)
3.30pm: Esplanade de la Gravette – Rescue demonstration (fire and man overboard)
4.45pm Lifeboat Stand – Raffle draw