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Save Mākena Skim Contest

Boarders ride in support of the ‘āina.

July 15, 2010
Trisha Smith

Due to its sugary white sand, breathtaking views and crystal clear coastal waters amid the magnificent cinder cone Pu‘u Ola‘i, this area commonly known as Big Beach has caught the eye of a variety of developers over the years.

Condos and resorts on Big Beach? That’s crazy talk to generations who cherish this beloved land that holds living treasures of Hawaiian history, yet “money talks” and threats have challenged its preservation. The Maui community actually rallied back in the ’80s against development, and thanks to a group of concerned citizens, they saved the beach and created the state park we all adore today.

The proposed threats continue today, but fortunately there are environmentally conscious organizations that keep on “fighting the good fight” of preservation, and empower island youth to stand up for this beautiful cultural landscape.

Article Photos

Catching air for awareness. Pound the shoreline of Maui’s beloved Big Beach on Saturday, July 24, during the 3rd Annual Save Mākena Skim Competition, and win some sweet prizes and support this treasured area. Visit
Photo: is one grassroots nonprofit that continues to provide an independent voice for citizens concerned about the future of Mākena State Park and the lands of Honua‘ula (from Wailea, south) ensuring that generations to come can also enjoy this special piece of paradise.

Join Maui Tomorrow, Surfrider Foundation Maui Chapter and to celebrate Mākena during a “fabulous day of aloha ‘āina” on Saturday, July 24, as they present the 3rd Annual Save Mākena Skim Competition at the south end of Oneloa.

Mākena is also a renowned spot for epic skim- and body-boarding—some of the best in the world—as the steep slope of the beach produces “an unbeatable swift ride toward killer shorepound.”

There will be five categories, from grommets (youth) to advanced, including female divisions, in both body- and skim-boarding divisions. Contestants can glide on the sand with a bodyboard (a thick, wide foam board) or skimboard (a smaller surfboard without the fins) to get up on the wave and ride it back in on the shore, incorporating tricks, “launching airs” and more to earn points from a panel of three esteemed judges. Points will be awarded for wave size, completion of ride and difficulty of maneuver.

Save Mākena’s Angie Hofmann started skim-boarding at 12 years old upon the very beach where the skim- and body-board skimming competition is held.

“This year’s (Save Mākena) theme is ‘Be the Wai’ or ‘be one with the water,’” she said. “As a skimmer, one needs to get into the ‘zone’ of timing the waves to execute a high performance ride so you really need to be one with the ocean.”

Hofmann also mentioned the nonprofit’s vision regarding island-wide stream slow restoration and her role in SLIM’s recent film production, Ho‘okele Wa‘a: Turning the Canoe.

“The message in this movie is how Hawai‘i can be such a model of sustainability for the world, and we already are ‘turning the canoe,’” she said. “The youth is rising up and feeling the kuleana of the ‘āina and acting on it!”

Spectators are welcome and there will be complimentary refreshments from local sources, guest speakers, as well as information tables.

There will be great prizes for contestants to win, such as apparel from Maui Skimmers, Maui Surfboards, Killah Wiffah Surf Shop and more. An awesome Maui Skimmers Skimboard will be raffled off during the awards ceremony, too.

Entry forms must be submitted prior to the event and are available online at, with a fee of $25. There is a discount for multiple division entries, and no beach entries will be allowed on Saturday.



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