Maui News

Pacific Whale Foundation to Celebrate World Oceans Day

June 1, 2018, 8:30 AM HST
* Updated May 30, 11:56 AM
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Pacific Whale Foundation (PWF) is celebrating World Oceans Day 2018 with activities for the entire family on Friday, June 8 and a proclamation signing ceremony with Mayor Alan Arakawa on Tues., June, 5 at 8:15 a.m. in Kihei’s Kamaole II Beach Park.

“Here in Hawai‘i, the Pacific Ocean is part of who we are,” said Mayor Arakawa. “In the sea, we find food, play, travel, exercise, education and more. So World Oceans Day provides us with a positive reminder to redouble our efforts to protect the ocean and reverse negative trends brought about by humans who have taken this vast, bountiful resource for granted.”

Representing Pacific Whale Foundation at the ceremony will be Acting Executive Director, Kristie Wrigglesworth. “We’re proud to be part of the environmental community on Maui that continues to display bold leadership on the issue of marine conservation and ocean health,” said Wrigglesworth. “It’s also very fitting that we acknowledge this important day and collaborative endeavour in Kihei, close to where Pacific Whale Foundation got its start.”

World Oceans Day was first proposed by Canada at the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro in 1992. In 2008, the United Nations officially recognized June 8 as World Oceans Day, and the global initiative has been growing ever since, as evidenced by the nearly 400 listings submitted to the events portal at by individuals, organizations and communities around the world.

“There are many ways to participate in World Oceans Day on Maui,” said Events Planner, Marina Scott. “You can join a clean-up effort, be a citizen-scientist, create action through art, take part in outreach activities, and help spread the word. Our ultimate goal is to inspire people to become ocean stewards in whatever way they can.”


World Oceans Day activities on June 8 include:


Naturalist-Hosted Beach Clean-Up Stations
7 a.m. to 11 a.m., North Kihei and Kahului

Pacific Whale Foundation’s certified Marine Naturalists will host clean-up stations at Kealia Pond National Wildlife Refuge and at Kahului Harbor on Friday morning. Free clean-up kits and data collection sheets will be provided at both locations. The data will contribute to PWF’s Marine Debris Monitoring and Removal Program. Other incentives for participating include ocean-themed books for keiki, reusable straws from PWF’s Ocean Store, and Maui Ocean Center day passes.

Guided Snorkel Clean-Up
7:30 a.m. and 8:30 a.m., Kealia Pond


Maui Ocean Center’s Education and Curatorial team will lead an underwater clean-up at 7:30 a.m. and 8:30 a.m. along the Kealia shoreline. Participants must bring their own snorkel gear, rash guard, and cutting tool such as scissors or a dive knife for this immersive experience.

Free Cruise with Reef Clean-up
8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Ma’alaea Harbor

PacWhale’s World Oceans Day cruise provides an opportunity for “citizen-scientists” to help with marine debris research. Led by certified Marine Naturalists, guests will conduct a microplastic tow on the way to a snorkel site to clean up litter from the reef where they will also collect, filter and record seawater samples. Space is limited on this free cruise and RSVP is required by calling (808) 249-8811 ext. 1.

Youth Art Contest

Keiki are encouraged to participate in the ‘Pollution Solutions’ art contest by submitting their creative responses to the question: How will you help keep plastic out of the ocean and protect marine animals? One lucky young artist will receive a free snorkel cruise for 4 or an Ocean Store gift certificate as a prize for artwork posted to on or before June 8. Keiki in PWF’s summer Ocean Camp will also take part in the art contest, as well as other World Ocean’s Day themed activities.

Dinner & A Movie
6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., Seascape Restaurant, Maui Ocean Center

Maui Ocean Center’s Seascape Restaurant will host a special screening of the award-winning, eco-conscious documentary, Straws. The 30-minute film will be followed by a discussion about the role we can all play in addressing the issue of single-use plastics and marine litter. The restaurant will remain open to the public and dining discounts will be provided to World Oceans Day clean-up participants. Reservations are recommended by calling (808) 270-7068.

For more information, visit


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