Kaua’i Lagoons, golfers contribute to Westside golf program

NAWILIWILI — “They told us to bring a truck,” said Richard Kuga of Envisioneering, one of the leaders of the West Kaua’i Youth Golf Club.

Kuga and Glenn Kagawa, senior engineer at Envisioneering and the spearhead of the WKYGC, or Hui Kolepa, were on hand to receive some equipment and golf balls that have been accumulating at the Kaua’i Lagoons since the kickoff for the westside golf program in late August.

“They’ve got a whole room of stuff,” Kuga said excitedly.

Kagawa said that in addition to the two buckets of golf balls they collected from their collection bucket, there were more balls in storage. “They fill up the bucket, empty it into boxes, and put the bucket out again,” he said.

The WKYGC was launched through the cooperative efforts of Kagawa, Kuga, Rod Lau of the Kaua’i Marriott Beach Club and Resort’s Sales Department, and Kenneth Kimura of Kaua’i Lagoons.

Funds for the launching of WKYCA were provided by a grant provided by county officials with the intent of providing Westside youth and seniors with similar golf opportunities as their counterparts enjoy in other parts of the island.

Through more cooperative efforts with the Waimea United Church of Christ and the Kikiaola Land Company, a small putting green will be the first of its kind in Waimea.

Among the items being loaded onto the pickup Saturday were complete golf club sets, empty golf bags and golf balls. Kuga explained that these were rental sets that have outlived their usefulness, but still have lot of life for the fledgling youth golfers.

One parent who was there with her child said her son is only 6, but has already been golfing for about a year. She says she takes him to Po’ipu where he plays his rounds.

Ricky Brun of the Kaua’i Lagoons was on hand to help supervise the equipment transfer, and with a quick flick on his cell phone, was talking with personnel at the Kukuiolono Golf Course to see if arrangements could be made for the young golfers to use that course’s facilities while waiting for the Waimea range to be built.

“They’ve all been Junior Golfers at one time in their life,” Kagawa said appreciatively. “And they don’t forget that experience.”

Kagawa said they will be hosting a fundraising golf tournament at the Kaua’i Lagoons on Jan. 21, 2006.

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