In 2012, GONDOLIN KLUB –the first SUP club in Europe– started GARBIBAI as the first world clean up river race in stand up paddle along the Urumea river in Donostia/San Sebastian (DSS), Basque Country.

Its name came from the fusion of three basque words: “garbi” (clean) “ibai” (river) and “bai” (yes).

For that first edition a non sense idea became a poster, and immediately after seeing the pictures of the objects collected in the race, antipodes café suggested to the organiser, to make a twist in this unique sport initiative by including strategical stages of “SHOWING” and “REUSING” those objects, and in addition, that from that moment all those collected objects should be called “treasures” and not “garbage”, and the project must include participative and accumulative communication.

The resulting diversion of the existent river, included many subtile and notorious situations, as for example:
– an urban intervention using all collected treasures made in front of the City Hall right after each race, (last one was a 6 hours cat-walk)
– a workshop at an art space with a subsequent exhibition in a commerce information centre,
– a creative workshop for new ideas,
– a competition on how to stick their posters with a special “GARBIBAI tape” that also could be use to dance cheek to cheek during a celebration after the race,
– the creation of a mascot “kktua” for creative workshops addressed to kids…
and many –MANY– more details.

Thus, this project evolved day by day, edition by edition, in the inevitable progress of giving the best, until the river entered into a mouth, where its sweet waters encounter salty ones.

Core activities of GARBIBAI, since its first edition, took part of a massive festival called OLATU TALKA. Celebrating San Sebastian as European Capital of Culture in 2016, year the organisation stop developing GARBIBAI in this fantastic way.

This was one of the nicest project we were involved, thousand stories we accumulate in our hearts… and livers.


— Marcelo Diaz Rodríguez
– Aitor Iturralde
– Iñigo Aristegui Tello
— Aitor Sansinenea
Rafa Zulaika
— Ladis Rasla
— Iker Tolosa
— Itziar Aranburu
— Jon Ander Garcia
— Tytti Thusberg
— Jone Pujana
— Alina Petrychuck
— Patricia Arruti
— Anartz Iturbe
— Nerea Otamendi
— Ane Zulaika
— Marcus Carús
— Alberto Nanclares da Veiga

— Basurama
— Colectivo Uruguay Basura Cero
— Bienal Iberoamericana de Diseño, dimad