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Tomimbang wins Telly Award for ‘Kaililaau’s Canoe: A Journey of Spirit’

By Staff | Jul 21, 2011

KAANAPALI — Kaanapali Beach Hotel’s special video, “Kaililaau’s Canoe: A Journey of Spirit,” and Producer Emme Tomimbang have been awarded a Bronze Telly, an industry honor for the best work by the most respected advertising agencies, production companies, television stations, cable operators and corporate video departments in the world.

Winners are chosen from more than 11,000 entries from 50 states and many countries. The award is the fourth Telly for Tomimbang.

“Kaililaau’s Canoe,” which first aired last year as “Emme’s Island Moments Thanksgiving Special” (with an encore on Christmas Day) on KGMB is now being shown on Kaanapali Beach Hotel’s in-house video channel 25.

The video will also be part of Hawaiian Airline’s in-flight entertainment lineup this fall.

The program tells the story of a canoe that was built during the 2010 Makahiki season by Kaanapali Beach Hotel staff, who spent four months building a 32-foot, four-man, single-hull traditional Hawaiian sailing vessel as part of Po’okela, the hotel’s award-winning cultural enrichment program.

Under the supervision of master canoe builder Charlie Nolan, hotel employees assisted with locating and cutting down an Albesia tree over 100 feet tall from the forests of West Maui.

Located deep inside Honokohau Valley, the tree was kindly donated by Kimo and Leimaile Lindsey with the simple request that the canoe be named after their oldest, now deceased child, Kaililaau.

The young boy wanted his father to build a canoe from a tree near their home in the valley. Unfortunately, the boy died before fulfilling his wish.

Fate would bring the canoe builder, the hotel and its 280 employees to make this Maui boy’s dream come true.

The canoe took to the waters fronting Kaanapali Beach Hotel for the first time on March 9, 2010. On July 24, 2010, hotel staff paddled out on the canoe to take the boy’s ashes out to sea, accompanied by his parents, family and friends.

“Kaililaau,” the canoe, is currently used as an educational vessel for hotel guests and visitors at Kaanapali Beach Hotel.