Pacific Paddler magazine - June 2011 - (Page 18)

The 3rd Annual OluKai Ho’olaule’a CelebrAting the oCeAn brings A Whole neW MeAning PhoTos Provided by oluKAi Maui, Hawaii was the place to be as hundreds of people from around the world converged on the North Shore on May 14-15th. The popular, 3rd Annual Ho’olaule’a attracted elite Stand Up Paddle (SUP) and one-man Outrigger Canoe (OC1) competitors to experience the exciting eight-mile downwind course, the Maliko Run, for a gender equal prize purse totaling $15,000. This event was presented by OluKai Premium Footwear to capture the spirit of the Hawaiian culture and demonstrate the strength and vitality of both sports. In addition to the races, OluKai provided a full weekend of ancient Hawaiian games, sailing canoe rides, live performances by Paula Fuga and Ekolu Kalama, authentic Hawaiian food and the beautiful dance of hula. A portion of the entry fee monies were donated to the OluKai ‘Ohana Giveback Program; beneficiaries include Maui Cultural Lands and Hawaii’s Junior Lifeguard Program. This year OluKai offered a new paddle division called the ‘Ohana Fun Paddle, a non-competitive, non-timed 3-mile downwinder for those who wanted a more leisurely, accessible paddle. With over 100 participants; kids, families and friends made this an event of and in itself. They enjoyed the energy and music and a pre-paddle warm up with yours truly (Suzie Cooney), to shake away the jitters and prepare for their adventure. The Fun Paddle kicked off at Pa’ia Youth and Cultural Center and ended at the lifeguard tower at Kanaha Beach Park. Anything humanly paddle-powered was eligible for entry. Prone paddlers, SUP paddlers and OC1s set out together along with the beautiful champion OluKai sailing canoe, Kamakakoa, to make the three-mile journey. Meanwhile, up at Maliko Gulch, just past Ho’okipa, a famous surf spot, the SUP race was getting under way. Over 200 racers and hundreds of spectators awaited the exciting start. The conditions were perfect with trades blowing 15-25 knots and the wind swell made it great for big glides and rides. The paddlers paused and gathered for a “pule” or Hawaiian blessing. What makes this event so special to many is the feeling that’s shared before, during and after the race. As one paddler describes it, “I always get chicken skin when we’re holding hands in the circle before the start of the race. To me, it’s what makes the OluKai Ho’olaule’a so memorable, not how I finish the race.” After the pule for the SUP race, a helicopter hovered above getting into position at the start, and the lead boat headed out for the pre-race line up. Photographers perched in the helicopter, on the cliffs and on jet skis, as the 14, 16, and 17-foot race boards entered the water. The SUP start itself was intense as the sea of competitors, in their bright yellow race jerseys headed up and into the swell with strong head winds to get into their critical start position. Some were on their knees in order to conserve energy. The green flag went down and the paddlers were off. Local favorites Livio Menelau, Mark Raaphorst and Jeremy Riggs, and last year’s woman dual event winner, Andrea Moller, were all paddling strong from the start. Other paddlers to mention, Michi Schweiger, Randy Royse, Eddie Ogata, Theresa Felgate and many more showed their backyard Maliko experience and skill. 18 pacific paddler June 2011

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Pacific Paddler magazine - June 2011

Kauai World Challenge
Molo Solo
Molokai Relay
Q&A with Kai Bartlett
OluKai Ho’olaule’a
Battle of the Paddle
SCORA's safety net
Primo Boys wild adventure
Suncare and UV Protection
Got lactate?
Maui to Molokai
Eono Hoe
Tavaru Sailing Canoe voyage

Pacific Paddler magazine - June 2011