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October's a great month to rediscover Formentera

foto btt-formenteraThe Formentera Council's office of tourism unveils the newest edition of “Discover Formentera in October”.

It's the return of the twice yearly campaign of special discounts and deals to draw travellers at season's end (and beginning), serving up serious discounts on ferries, rental cars and lodging. For up-to-date info visit www.formentera.es.

Tourism secretary Alejandra Ferrer encouraged tourists to come get to know Formentera after high season. “The weather is still nice”, said Ferrer, “and visitors in October have a jam-packed —if slightly laid back— programme of culture and sports to look forward to”.

In 2018 two transport companies, Trasmapi and Mediterranea Pitiusa, are taking part in the “Discover Formentera” push, giving travellers 25% to 35% discounts on tickets. Fifteen local lodgings will slash prices by up to 40% and five car-hire agencies as well as two diving centres are joining the drive.

Gastronomic weekends

The two first weekends in October (5, 6 & 7 / 12, 13 & 14), a host of local restaurants will serve gastronomic sampling menus of typical fare for €20 (drinks not included).

Seven Formentera restaurants will offer sampling menus specially designed for the occasion. Some focus on time-honoured dishes and others go for fresh twists and rebooted versions of old classics, very often with exclusive, creative takes at affordable prices.

For details visit: http://bit.ly/2MIru9P

SONEGPosidònia

October 12-14 Formentera welcomes Son Estrella Galicia Posidònia, a 360º experience in gastronomy, music, nature and heritage.

Music: Lineup (as yet under wraps) of alternative artists performing acoustic and electronic sets.
Gastronomy: Formentera restaurants do gastronomy with the help of a Galicia-based, Michelin-starred pro chef.
Nature: Local guide takes participants to some of Formentera's signature spots, with stops in between to hear local artists perform unplugged.

For details visit: http://bit.ly/2MOiWOK

Save Posidonia Forum

Fresh off the success of the Save Posidonia Festival in 2017, this year it's the Forum. October 19 will see participation of biologists and NGOs like Greenpeace, Oceana and WWF.

For details visit: https://www.saveposidoniaproject.org/

October 12-14 it's the fourth Formentera ZEN, a competition with three full days devoted to health and wellness, both physical and emotional. Mindfulness, an organic food expo, yoga, dissemination, training and much more. For info and details about how to sign up, visit http://formenterazen.es/?lang=ca

October 11-12 it's La Mola's Festes del Pilar, an event with live music, traditional dance, kids' activities and a festive procession.

La Mola and Sant Ferran's craft and artistic markets will remain open, too.

Sporting events

October 6 will feature two events: the Formentera Triathlon and the Formentera Sprint. www.triatlonformentera.com

October 12, get ready for the 22nd Pujada de La Mola and a “bike ride round the island”, Volta Cicloturista a Formentera October 26-28. www.unisportconsulting.com/formenterabttrace

The Amics de Formentera group have put together the Volta a Peu, a “walk round the island”, for groups and in stages, this October 11 to 14. To see the programme and register, visit: http://amicsdeformentera.cat/

Formentera welcomes visiting 'Energy Observer'

foto energy observer 2Secretaries of tourism and environment Alejandra Ferrer and Daisee Aguilera stopped for a visit this morning at Energy Observer, the world's first greenhouse gas emission-free, autonomous, hydrogen-powered vessel, set to anchor the coming days in Formentera waters.

The futuristic, electric-propulsion vessel uses a mix of renewable energies and a system tuned to produce decarbonated hydrogen extracted from sea water. The system, which renders unnecessary the outsized batteries used in normal electric vessels, means a lighter, more efficient watercraft, and special built-in storage equipment makes the sporadic recharges of the past obsolete, both on land and at sea.

Partnership with Save Posidonia Project
During the visit the secretaries saw close-up how the boat works and spoke with the crew about Save Posidonia Project and Formentera's environmental and sustainability strategies.

In the words of the tourism secretary, “we're honoured—not just that the Energy Observer crew has chosen to include Formentera on its route, but to hear them talk about our island as one of the best preserved in the Mediterranean”. Ferrer said it was important to safeguard the island's natural spaces and pointed up 2017's Save Posidonia Project, in particular—“it's the reason behind our partnership with the Energy Observer and what allows us to work with the ship's crew towards life-preserving environmental sustainability in our seas”.

Environment secretary Daisee Aguilera called navigation on the Energy Observer “noiseless” and the vessel's emissions “basically innocuous”. A matchless experience, said Aguilera, “and one we hope will serve as an example for other ships in places like this where marine traffic is heavy and use of harmful fossil fuels is high”.

Raising global awareness
From 2017 to 2022, the Energy Observer's “Odyssey for the Future” will find the crew pulling in at 101 ports at fifty countries around the world as part of an effort to put cutting-edge tech to work in extreme conditions and feel out the planet's energy networks of the future.

The crew imagines the world tour as a showcase for innovation in environmental transition, and, in the case of the ship's travelling exhibit, social media and numerous documentaries, a chance to educate the world about renewable energy, biodiversity, low-impact agriculture, mobility and even the sharing economy.

Spotlighting 'best of summer', Spanish broadcaster's 'Comando al sol' visits Formentera

Comando al sol RTVE a Formentera IIThe Formentera Council wishes to thank Spanish national television for its support as the programme "Comando actualidad" turns its cameras to the island for a recent, start-of-summer episode. The special installment found the crew of the TV show checking out some of Formentera's most cherished sights like Bartolo beach bar, ses Illetes, Fonda Pepe, posidonia seagrass meadows and a sunset from Migjorn.

Tourism secretary Alejandra Ferrer praised the laid-back and welcoming vision of Formentera the show's producers put forward, adding "the fact our island is such a well-loved destination is thanks to a lot of people's hard work, and to our unmatched natural surroundings".

One-point-four million viewers, or 9.7% of Spanish audiences, tuned in last Monday at 10.43pm as RTVE aired “Comando al sol, Los Tops del verano” on channel one.

Two summertime workplace inspectors put the screws on job insecurity

foto pla lluita 2Three officials from the Balearic and Formentera public administrations —regional minister of employment, trade and industry Iago Negueruela, local trade secretary Alejandra Ferrer, and Balearic chief of employment, social economy and workplace health Isabel Castro— sat down this afternoon to tell Formentera about the plan to tackle employment insecurity in 2018.

Negueruela explained that one feature of the plan, which this year is in its fourth iteration, calls for two inspectors exclusively for Formentera. The pair, who arrived on the island at the start of July and will remain through the end of August, will be responsible for overseeing roughly 80 inspections.

According to Negueruela, 1,096 individuals have seen their workplace conditions improve in the last three years thanks to the plan. He nuanced his remarks by saying that the short-term nature of local jobs makes employment in the islands extremely precarious. The Balearic minister said that insecurity must be the focal point of any corrective strategy.

For her part, secretary Ferrer trumpeted the success of past versions of the scheme, touting their ability to hamper unfair competition, guarantee employee rights and take aim at job insecurity.

She also highlighted Formentera's historic participation in such efforts. With help from within the Council, the inspectors were able to find housing, which, in turn, made it possible to expand their patrols. Ferrer described the more expansive patrols as vital, “particularly since so many of Formentera's businesses open at eight in the evening”. “In the past, the inspectors came over on the ten a.m. ferry and left at six in the evening”, explained Ferrer, a fact which effectively shielded nighttime businesses from inspections.

Formentera puts out catalogue celebrating ten years of Sant Ferran art market

catalogo-mercat-2018--baja-def8As Sant Ferran's “art market” turns ten, the Formentera Council's department of trade and office of culture and patrimony have put together a catalogue remembering ten years' worth of art in the street. The visual stroll down memory lane comes with twenty-four uniquely special looks at the island representing an equally diverse spectrum of art forms.

The Sant Ferran market was born following the initiative of a small collective of plastic and visual artists moved by the prospect of sharing their art — amongst themselves, and with people in the street. The premise: to create a multidisciplinary space for lovers of creativity and culture. The catalogue is at once a nod to the market's past, and an invitation to rediscover a hub of exchange and dialogue between some of the island's most prominent artistic languages.

The market's ten-year trajectory is proof not only of the initiative's staying power, but also the warm reception it has enjoyed among islanders and visitors. Past and present artists include Maria Teresa Matilla, Nuria Fortuny, Claudia Maccarini, Juan Escudero, Emilia Brussoni, Anna Ametller, Mar Ample, Sandra González, Raquel Caramazana Bocanegra, Julie Aubrun, Francisco Lucas, Elena Montesinos, Muntsabee, Fabiana Schulz, Iván Arguedas, César Ordás, Olga López, Maria Isabel Escandell, Gabriel Raventós, Juan González and Pablitopablo.

The catalogue can be found at the stands of market vendors. They are there every day but Wednesday and Sunday.

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