‘Stand Up’ For Maui’s Special Needs Youth
By Madeline Ziecker
A brand-new annual stand up paddle fundraiser for Maui’s special needs youth, “Paddle Imua,” kicks off next month on Saturday, May 5.
The paddle “fun race” begins at 10:30 a.m. and runs from Maliko Gulch in Haiku to the Hawaiian Canoe Club Hale in Kahului.
The event is organized by Imua Family Services to benefit the organization’s upcoming “Camp Imua” annual program, which takes place this year in June at Camp Maluhia in the West Maui Mountians.
At Camp Imua over 100 volunteers and 5o special needs campers spend a week together doing crafts, playing games, swimming, taking helicopter rides, and more.
“Paddle Imua will not only benefit Camp Imua, but it will also celebrate the lives of special needs children by embracing our connection to the ocean, which defines our sense of place, Hawai’i nei,” said Camp Imua Coordintor Maile John.
All are welcome to register in the Paddle Imua debut event which includes food, music, and live entertainment starting at 3 p.m. at the Hawaiian Canoe Club Hale.
The celebration also features an awards ceremony for the top 3 finishers in each division at 4:30p.m. along with giveaways, a grand prize drawing, and complimentary ‘swag bags’ for all participants.
Several local businesses are sponsoring Paddle Imua in addition to the main event sponsors, Bluesmiths and David Kalama’s Waterman Ohana, including Flatbread Maui, Upcountry Fitness, Maui Brewing Company, Paia Inn, Dakine, and others.
Registration is $50 (if received on or before Tuesday, May 1); $60 if received after May 1, and $70 on the day of the event. All race fees include race entry, paddle and event T-shirts, food and refreshments. For more information visit Imua Family Services online.