Ruegen/Germany, September 30 through October 02, 2023
Submitted by Itti from Pink Patrol Bochum and Bianca from Pink Paddler Dueren
October means Pinktober
So again, 55 paddlers from various German cities (Bochum, Datteln, Dueren, Hamburg, Hameln, Kassel, Luenen, Witten, and Wolfsburg) met in Dranske on the German island of Ruegen in the Baltic Sea for a training weekend. It was not only to raise awareness about breast cancer but to continue fighting against this disease in a sporting and entertaining way. In addition, it was the 10th anniversary of this event!
Some teams had already gone to Ruegen before the training for some sightseeing, team activities or simply for a vacation. The official start was on Saturday afternoon.
After a very warm welcome from Ute Luedke and Bernd Bolder, we started in two dragon boats for the first session on the Baltic Sea. Ok, that’s different than paddling on a river or a lake – but it is fun! We finished the day with dinner and partying at the Dronte bar.
We kicked off Sunday morning by having a team photo. Then we got into two dragon boats and an outrigger canoe for a crisp and lively tour across the bay to Wiek and back. In total 7.5 kilometres… Exhausting but amazing at the same time!
In the afternoon, there was the choice between doing a technical training session in the dragon boat with coach Frank Pfeifer or trying SUP (stand up paddleboard) or mega SUP.
Again, we finished the day with a great dinner and party.
On Monday morning we celebrated a flower ceremony, a memorial for those who have not survived, while at the same time encouraging those who are still fighting. We are strong!
In a closing session, we summarized the experiences we had in the previous days and thanked those who made this possible, Ute and Bernd.
Regardless if “experienced“ or “newbie“, everyone was happy and impressed by this amazing experience of paddling together, chatting, partying, and celebrating life!
We are already looking forward to meeting again in October 2024!