David Beckham visited Kernville this past weekend, sparking controversy with picture in Kern River

Posted at 5:51 PM, Jul 24, 2017
and last updated 2017-07-24 20:51:45-04

Soccer icon David Beckham made a stop in Kernville this weekend, chronicling his adventures on his motorcycle on Instagram.

One picture in particular has sparked a bit of controversy online. Beckham posted a selfie while standing in the Kern River, prompting people to choose sides on whether that was a good idea or not given the dangers the river has presented this year.

Many were happy to see a celebrity of Beckham's caliber enjoying the river, while others felt it was bad that Beckham was encouraging people to get in the water.

Gary Ananian, the founder and executive director of Kern River Conservancy, received mixed reactions when he reposted Beckham's picture on the conservancy's Facebook page, but said he was happy to see Beckham enjoying the river.

"We love when people are coming up to the Kern River," Ananian said.

"A lot of celebrities that come, they are incognito. They come in and they come out and no one really knows about it and they don't really post on social media. And then he (Beckham) came in and is all over social media. So it's great to have that, great to have that exposure. Not just for the town but for the community as well to know people are coming up here."

Kern County Search and Rescue told 23ABC their suggestion remains as the summer continues: Stay out of the river unless accompanied by professional.