Kaanapali, Maui Welcomes 60 Canoe Sailors for the 7th Annual Wa'a Kiakahi Festival, June 1-3 - Kaanapali Resort
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Kaanapali, Maui Welcomes 60 Canoe Sailors for the 7th Annual Wa’a Kiakahi Festival, June 1-3

KAANAPALI, MAUI – Kaanapali Beach Resort will welcome 60 of the best watermen and women who practice ancient Hawaiian canoe sailing at the 7th annual Wa‘a Kiakahi festival, June 1-3. Events will include traditional Hawaiian welcome and farewell ceremonies, sailing canoe rides, celestial navigation and history talks, and race viewing.

Created by the Hawaiian Sailing Canoe Association (HSCA), Wa‘a Kiakahi is an event dedicated to traditional Hawaiian canoe sailing and the education of its history. Contrary to ordinary outrigger canoe paddling, HSCA honors how the ancient Hawaiians actually traveled between the islands: members do not make crew changes during races and they travel every island channel that connects the Hawaiian islands.

Schedule of Events:
Friday, June 1, 3:00 p.m.
Arrival of sailing canoes on Ka‘anapali Beach and a traditional Hawaiian welcome ceremony after 10, six-man crews complete a 30-mile race from Kahului Harbor.

Saturday, June 2, 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Sailing canoe rides for all ages, picture story boards and “talk story” opportunities with race team members (some who sailed the Hokule‘a) about celestial navigation and the history of the Hawaiian sailing canoes.

Sunday, June 3, 8:00 a.m.
Sailing canoe send-off and traditional Hawaiian farewell ceremony for 10, sixman crews as they race 40 miles from Ka‘anapali to the island of Moloka‘i.

“What makes this event so special is how simple it is,” said Shelley Kekuna, executive director for the Ka‘anapali Beach Resort Association, the event sponsor. “The watermen and women race, share their knowledge and then race again. They are remarkable in their endurance, passion and dedication to keeping this ancient form of transportation alive.”

The mission of the Hawaiian Sailing Canoe Association (HSCA) is to learn, revive, educate and practice the ancient Hawaiian skills and values as they relate to sailing canoes and the Hawaiian culture. HSCA is the only Hawaiian sailing canoe association in the world and is celebrating its 25th anniversary in 2012. For more information about HSCA, call 808-247-3559. www.HSCA.biz.

About Ka‘anapali Beach Resort: Set beside three miles of white-sand beach and with a view of two neighboring Hawaiian Islands, Moloka‘i and Lana‘i, Ka‘anapali Beach Resort has long been established as the Hawaiian resort “where the world comes to play.” An active vacation destination, Ka‘anapali Beach Resort features an oceanfront shopping center, eleven hotels and condominiums, world-class spas, two golf courses and more than a dozen tennis courts. Over half a million visitors choose to visit Kaanapali annually. www.kaanapaliresort.com.