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Run & Walk for Whales supports Pacific Whale Foundation’s many programs

By Staff | Feb 8, 2018

The 2017 Run & Walk for Whales attracted over 800 participants from around in the world.

MAALAEA – Pacific Whale Foundation’s 2018 Run & Walk for Whales will take place on Saturday, Feb. 10, beginning and ending at the Maui Harbor Shops in Maalaea.

The course will be safer and more walker-friendly than ever, encouraging all abilities to join in this fun and rewarding event.

All proceeds will benefit Pacific Whale Foundation’s mission to protect whales and the ocean through science and advocacy.

The opening event in the 2018 Maui Whale Festival, Run & Walk for Whales is one of Maui’s largest running and walking events.

Participants can choose from a one-mile, 5K, 10K or 11.5-mile course. The easy-to-follow courses are mostly flat and fast, and participants can often see whales breaching in the distance.

All participants will receive a medal and T-shirt. Divisional winners will receive cruises from Pacific Whale Foundation.

Online registration will close at 11:59 p.m. (Hawaiian-Aleutian time) on Wednesday, Feb. 7. Late registration will be accepted at Pacific Whale Foundation offices or at packet pickup on Friday, Feb. 9, from 9 a.m. to noon.

The post-race festivities take place in the courtyard at the Maui Harbor Shops. The 2018 celebration will be bigger and better than ever with music by Deejay Teddy Rux of Your Mix Maui, breakfast for participants, eco-vendors and great prizes.

All proceeds from the event support Pacific Whale Foundation’s humpback whale research in Hawaii and other parts of the Pacific, marine education programs for local school children as well as conservation programs, including efforts to keep marine debris out of our oceans, prevent vessel-whale collisions and end whaling worldwide.

Participants are invited to take part in a post-race whalewatch cruise departing from Maalaea Harbor. Tickets will be 40 percent off for all registered runners and walkers. Advance reservations are strongly recommended. To reserve your whalewatch, call (808) 249-8811, extension 1, after you’ve registered for the race online.

Pacific Whale Foundation’s marine education team will be offering a morning version of its popular Ocean Camp on race day for children ages 4-12. The program takes place from 6 to 10 a.m. at Pacific Whale Foundation’s Discovery Center in Maalaea. The cost is $25 per child. Participants will learn about whales and their ocean habitat in a dynamic, hands-on program led by a caring team of teaching professionals. The adult to child ratio will be 1:8, and enrollment is limited to 30 children.

Sign up for this program in advance to ensure your child has fun while you race. Call Pacific Whale Foundation at (808) 249-8811, extension 1, for information.

In other event news, the 2018 Online Auction will be live Feb. 11-24. Bid on hundreds of unique gifts and experiences for a great cause at biddingowl.com/pacificwhale.

Featured items for 2018 include 30,000 miles from Hawaiian Airlines, dining certificates for some of Maui’s top restaurants, two nights at the Grand Wailea, Wyland paintings, cruises with Pacific Whale Foundation and other exciting island activities.

Your support of the Online Auction for Whales will benefit whale research, marine education and conservation programs led by Pacific Whale Foundation, a 501(c)(3) IRS tax-exempt charitable organization. To donate, contact onlineauction@pacificwhale.org.

More information on the Maui Whale Festival is available at mauiwhalefestival.org.

This year’s lineup includes the Run & Walk for Whales on Saturday, Feb. 10; Online Auction for Whales from Feb. 11-24; Online Chat with the Experts on Tuesday, Feb. 13; storytime performance with the Banana Slug String Band at Kihei Public Library, Concert Cruise with John Cruz, second annual World Whale Film Festival on Friday, Feb. 16; Keiki Concert Cruise with the Banana Slug String Band, Concert Cruise with HAPA, and “An Unknown Future” Masquerade Gala on Saturday, Feb. 17; Maalaea Harbor Party and Concert Cruise with Amy Gilliom on Sunday, Feb. 18; Great Whale Count and Story Time with Author Gill McBarnet at the Kihei Library on Saturday, Feb. 24; and Great Whale Count Results VIP Cruise on Sunday, Feb. 25.