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Hale Pai
Pacific American-News Journal

Iulai-July 1996 Volume 2 Issue 7

Kahekili - The Thunder

by Moana Huddy (Lokahi Ohana O Hawaii, Inc.)

After several Portuguese sausage sales, candy sales and yard sales, Hui Heihei Wa`a raised enough money to purchase a Hawaiian outrigger racing canoe and canoe trailer. Our canoe "Kahekili" was purchased from Spencer LaVea of Kahekili O` Ke Kai O.C.C., Foster City, CA and our trailer came from Adam Kramer of Mountain Home O.C.C., Portland, OR. Kahekili is classified an OC6. This is the class of canoe used in the World sprint Races held each year throughout the world. This years race will be held in New Caledonia. Kahekili was built in 1992 for the World Sprint Races held in Sacramento, CA. Kahekili is 44' - 3" long and seats six paddlers. Kahekili was built for the smooth waters found in the Puget Sound. Our canoe trailer is 41' long and can carry two outrigger canoes. It is quite a sight to see a 44' - 3" Hawaiian outrigger canoe being pulled down I-5.

Hui Heihei Wa`a will participate in several races during the summer and hopefully sponsor a race this August in Silverdale, WA. We will field girls, boys and mens crew and hopefully a womens crew. We haven't even started practicing yet, and it appears that we will need to raise money to buy another canoe. We are on file with the State of Washington as a non-profit organization, so we will be contacting businesses that might be interested in sponsoring our club through monetary donations or services. Our canoe and trailer would make a great mobile advertising bulletin board for our sponsors.

Hawaiian outrigger canoe paddling has became an international sport. There was recently a request from a group in Saudi Arabia and France looking for used Hawaiian racing canoes. To my amazement, there are several clubs in the Pacific Northwest with Hawaiian outrigger canoes. Washington State currently has four outrigger canoe clubs, Hui Heihei Wa`a (Silverdale), Seattle OCC (Seattle), Skamania Kayak & Canoe (Stevenson) and a club in Everett. There are also four or five clubs in Oregon and seven clubs in Vancouver/Victoria B.C. There is also an outrigger racing association (Pacific Northwest Outrigger Racing Canoe Association) based out of Portland. This group is responsible for organizing canoe races, set standards for canoe specifications and race rules and to unite all outrigger canoe clubs in the Pacific Northwest (Washington & Oregon). P.N.O.R.C.A. is part of an international racing association called I.P.C.F. (International Polynesian Canoe Federation). The racing season in the Northwest starts in January and the final race is scheduled in October. For those of you "on line", check out the Pacific Northwest Racing Canoe Page at: http://www.nwcanoe.com/. Just about everybody who has anything to do with canoe paddling in the Northwest is on this page.

As you drive along the Puget Sound don't be surprised if you hear "hup, ho" or see a Hawaiian outrigger canoe gliding through the water, it's not memories of Ala Moana Beach or the Ala Wai Canal, it'll be Hui Heihei Wa`a or one of the other canoe clubs perpetuating the art and sport of Hawaiian outrigger canoe paddling in the Pacific Northwest.

For more information on Canoe Racing in the Pacific Northwest -Washington and Portland areas contact Moana Huddy (360) 692-5032  

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Copyright 1996 Hale Pai Pacific American-News Journal
Last modified: February 28, 1998

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