Kahana Canoe Club enjoys great turnout
LAHAINA – Kahana Canoe Club was founded some 40 years ago at the sleepy fishing village just north of Honokowai. Some years later, the organization moved south to the home center of the West Side’s canoe clubs at Hanakao’o Beach Park.
Today, the Green and Purple maintain the advocacy of the Hawaiian canoe culture with annual consistency within the Maui County Hawaiian Canoe Association guidelines and purpose.
A blend of veteran and new millennium leadership guides the club’s rich experiences within the burgeoning sport.
Indeed, the KCC Board of Directors is headed up by President John Kuia, a member of one of the founding families of the club, along with Vice President Ana Farmer, Secretary Diane Delos Reyes, Treasurer Natalie Marcus and Board Members Annie Wilson, Cynthia Conrad, Danielle Kuck, Gentleman Jim Kohler, Liz Hongo, John Greenhalgh and Carl Kobayashi.
Kahana’s coaching staff is comprised of Kai Keahi, Mason Panis, Ana Farmer, Genevieve Ruvald and Jenna Hunter for the adult crews, and keiki mentors Bob Fisher and Jesse Roy.
“Having Kai Keahi return to the coaching role has been instrumental in pushing us to the next level – not just physically but technically as well. It has also allowed our key organizers/administrators, who usually end up coaching and facilitating practices, the opportunity to just get back to paddling and focus on improving and fall in love with the sport all over again,” said Farmer.
“This year has been a great turnout for our club with increased membership and the return of several paddlers from six years plus ago,” she continued.
“Communication and organization has improved greatly, and all of this was evident in how smooth and successful our regatta went. We would like to thank everyone that donated to our regatta silent auction in support of the club.”
Kahana is currently running in the middle of the MCHCA inshore regatta standings with two events remaining on the schedule. Leading the way is the unbeaten and top-seeded Freshmen Women crew of Farmer, Jenna Hunter, Genevieve Ruvald, Danielle Kuck, Cynthia Conrad, Misty Branco and Suzi Tucker.
Other front-running crews with the inside track to MCHCA titles and state championship qualifying seeding include the Senior Women, Novice B Women, Mixed Novice B, Novice A Women, Sophomore Men, and Senior Men among the adult crews.
Farmer added that Kahana’s keiki division paddlers are young, but coaches and volunteer helpers are developing them as they improve weekly.
In particular, the 12B Boys and Girls and 13 Girls are moving up each week in the standings.
Last weekend, Kahana blessed its koa canoe, the Kainalu. “There is a lot of history behind this canoe, and we are all fortunate to be a part of this blessing and learning more about its history,” said Farmer.
The club is looking for sponsorship for the upcoming long distance season with their collective sights set on the Na Wahine O Ke Kai race for the women and the Molokai Hoe for the men.
If you would like to sponsor or donate to help the club in these events and other long distance races, contact Farmer at (808) 727-0947.