Lennox Head businessman Gene Torchia supports a proposed Rip Curl surfing event for Lennox Point.
Lennox Head businessman Gene Torchia supports a proposed Rip Curl surfing event for Lennox Point. The Northern Star

Rip Curl surfing event getting ripped

LENNOX Head takeaway food shop owner Gene Torchia believes the community should 'ban the banners' instead of banning a Rip Curl surfing event.

His comments come after the North East Surfers' Alliance spoke out against a proposal by Rip Curl to hold a professional surfing event at the Lennox National Surfing Reserve.

Mr Torchia said he did not want the debate to divide the community, but he also did not want the 'voice of a minority' to outweigh the views of others.

“Banning things is nonsense, it takes away all the debate,” Mr Torchia said.

“My proposal is that the community support a proposal for Rip Curl to hold a competition at Lennox Point, provided all environmental and logistical concerns are addressed to the satisfaction of the council and the community.

“Sure there might be issues, but they can be addressed. We don't need to ban surfing events at the Point altogether.”

Rip Curl has not yet made a formal application to Ballina Shire Council to hold such an event, but discussions regarding the proposal are taking place.

Mr Torchia, who is a surfer, said such an event would give local tourism operators a much-needed boost after the downturn in business they had experienced last summer due to factors such as bad weather.

He would be speaking with every business in Lennox Head to ask their opinion on the issue, and would call for a show of support.



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