Duke Kahanamoku Beach Challenge next month in Waikiki

The Garden Island

HONOLULU — Waikiki Community Center (WCC) will host the 32nd annual Duke Kahanamoku Beach Challenge on May 7.

The event draws both locals and visitors for a day of team canoe races, stand up paddle races and kayak races at Duke’s lagoon and the beach fronting the Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort.

As WCC’s annual fundraiser, the event supports the multi-generational services the organization has been providing to the Waikiki community for the last 39 years.

“In addition to our services, we’re proud to serve as a hub for seven other community organizations and programs such as Waikiki Health, Healthy Mothers Healthy Babies and the Native Hawaiian Hospitality Association,” said Caroline Hayashi, WCC president. “Many of our partners’ needs are even more significant this year, so we are happy this event will have an exponential effect in benefiting both our programs and these other key organizations that use the WCC campus.”

The day’s events will include community teams competing in classic Hawaiian watersports. The outrigger canoe race is an open-ocean, quarter-mile competition open to all skill levels.

Teams will also participate in the stand up paddle race in Duke Kahanamoku Lagoon where paddlers will race one length of the lagoon from the makai end and finishing at the mauka end.

Brand new for this year, teams also have the opportunity to compete in a two-person kayak race in the lagoon. Team slots are still available and sign-ups are open until April 21.

Visitors can browse the craft fair on Hilton Hawaiian Village’s Great Lawn featuring local crafts and goods, games and activities for the keiki, as well as watch entertainers.

For info or to sign up a team for the competition: www.waikikicommunitycenter.com.

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