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Free, family-friendly fishing tournament set for Saturday at Kahekili Beach Park

By Staff | Oct 26, 2017

A past fishing tournament participant tries his luck.

KAANAPALI – Join the crowd on Saturday, Oct. 28, for a free keiki fishing tournament as a chance to bring the ohana together and spend a day fishing at the beach.

Put the iPhones and computers down for a couple hours, enjoy a fun-filled day, learn about aquatic resources through various education tables and enter for a chance to win some awesome prizes in the catch and release fishing tournament. Bring your favorite lure or dunking pole. All ages are welcome. Kids, don’t forget to bring an older sibling, mother or uncle to help you release your catch safely back into the water.

The event will be held in the Kahekili Herbivore Fisheries Management Area (KHFMA) at Old Airport Beach in North Kaanapali. The significance of having the tournament in the KHFMA is to bring the fishing community down to this area and to spread the word that fishermen and divers are welcome! Lots of misinformation has been going around for years. Many fishermen think this is a no-take zone, and contest organizers want to change that. This will give them the opportunity to spread the word and talk about management efforts and success.

The rules are straightforward: one dunking pole and one whipping pole per contestant. Dunking poles must use barbless fishing hooks that will be handed out the morning of the tournament. No one is too young or too old to enter. This is a catch and release fishing tournament; dead or harmed fish will not qualify. Mandatory rules will be explained at registration at 8 a.m. that morning (no exceptions).

The one thing organizers would like the participants to learn from entering this tournament is to do their part in helping manage our aquatic resources, so their kids can enjoy the lifestyle that we do today.

Event sponsors providing great prizes include All About Fish Maui, Current Hawaii Lures, Maui Sporting Goods, New Maui Fishing Supply, and West Maui Sports and Fishing Supply.

This tournament is part of the annual Ridge to Reef Rendezvous that brings together over a dozen groups working on some aspect of stewardship from the top of the mountain to the ocean. The theme of this year’s event is “Ocean Optimism.”

This free, family-friendly community event also features ways to get involved, the first-ever “Haunted Reef” on Maui, plus great food, music and prizes.

Join your friends and neighbors along with scientists, managers and local conservation groups on Oct. 28 at Kahekili Beach Park from 9 a.m. to noon.

In the week leading up to the event, join a casual presentation and talk story on coastal water quality at Kohola Brewery in Lahaina on Oct. 25 at 6:30 p.m. (ages 21 and up). On Friday, Oct. 27, at 6 p.m., come to Whalers Village for a free special screening of the award-winning film “Chasing Coral,” followed by a Q&A panel of reef researchers.

For more information, visit www.facebook.com/WestMauiKumuwai or call (808) 283-1631.