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Published on : Saturday, August 13, 2016
In the spirit of Duke Kahanamoku and all that his legacy signifies to surfing and sharing
the Aloha Spirit, the Hawai‘i Tourism Authority (HTA) is teaming up with the Hawai‘i Surfing Association (HSA) to encourage more residents to embrace surfing statewide, starting this weekend.
HTA announced the awarding of $150,000 to a surfing association that has provided contests in Hawai‘i
for more than 50 years to amateur surfers of all ages and skill levels, ranging from champions, like
Carissa Moore and John John Florence, to weekend wave riders. Last year, HSA had contestants from
ages seven to 81 years old, all bonded by their love of surfing.
George D. Szigeti, HTA president and CEO, and a lifelong surfer who once competed professionally,
said the purpose for HTA’s funding goes beyond helping today’s aspiring surfers to improve their skills.
“The Hawai‘i Surfing Association has pledged to make the joy of surfing more accessible to more of
Hawai‘i’s people, especially youths, and we wholeheartedly support their vision.
“The association impressed us with their plan to not only revitalize interest in surfing in communities
statewide, but to also foster surfing ambassadors among our young people to carry forth the message
of surfing with aloha and being good stewards of our beaches, ocean and marine life.”
According to Glen Moncata, HSA executive director, HTA’s sponsorship is empowering the association
to significantly upgrade the experience for contest participants. Benefits include being able to offer
more divisions to accommodate different skill levels, running four-person heats during the contests, and
the introduction of a computerized scoring system. There will also be new and upgraded tents, banners
and equipment, and additional staff members hired to help manage and operate each contest.
Moncata said, “We have a dedicated team of volunteers and supporters that will make these contests
fun and worthwhile regardless if you’re experienced or just starting out. HTA’s funding allows us to
make these contests a better, more enjoyable experience for everyone who comes to participate. That’s important because surfing is Hawai‘i’s sport, Hawai‘i’s gift to the world.”
HSA is holding 25 events on O‘ahu (11), Maui (4), Kaua‘i (4) and the Island of Hawai‘i (6) for its new
season of surf contests that begins this weekend and runs through May 2017. Many of the contests
also feature competitions between student teams representing their high schools.
Source:- Hawai‘i Tourism