WAIKIKI BEACH – August 14, 2018 – Duke’s OceanFest, Waikiki’s premier ocean sports festival, begins this weekend, August 18 to 26, honoring the enduring legacy of the legendary Duke Paoa Kahanamoku. An Olympic champion, surfing pioneer and expert paddler, Duke Kahanamoku was revered worldwide as an accomplished waterman and Hawaii’s Ambassador of Aloha.
Now in its 17th year, Duke’s OceanFest features a series of fun and exciting ocean and beach competitions and special events held the week of Duke Kahanamoku’s birthday anniversary (August 24, 1890). Most competitions and events are taking place at Queen’s Surf on Kuhio Beach in Waikiki, a favorite surfing spot of Duke and home to the magnificent statue honoring his lifetime of achievements and furthering the Aloha Spirit.
As Duke would have wanted, Duke’s OceanFest is presented as a joyous celebration of ocean sports and aloha for all, offering a variety of competitions and events for participants of different ages and skill levels, including the physically challenged.
Chris Colgate, co-chair of Duke’s OceanFest, commented, “Duke’s OceanFest represents what Duke Kahanamoku stood for and how he lived his life by sharing his aloha and friendship with everyone he encountered in Hawaii and around the world. This annual festival, held in Duke’s honor, is a community-inspired event that is wholly dedicated to bringing people together to share our aloha and celebrate the ocean with everyone who participates.”
Duke’s OceanFest events include surfing competitions for youths, amateurs, pros, tandems, the physically challenged and animals; a Wounded Warrior canoe regatta; a one-mile ocean swim; surfboard waterpolo; beach volleyball; movies on Waikiki Beach; a beachfront luau; and a special lei draping of Duke Kahanamoku’s statue. (Events listed below.)
Duke’s OceanFest supports the Outrigger Duke Kahanamoku Foundation (ODKF). Net proceeds from Duke’s OceanFest help fund ODKF’s awarding of scholarships and grants to Hawaii residents and nonprofit groups competing in water sports and volleyball.
Renowned as Hawaii’s greatest athlete, Duke Kahanamoku won six Olympic medals, including three gold medals in swimming, and is recognized as the “Father of International Surfing.” In his prime, Kahanamoku was the world’s fastest swimmer, the single-most influential person in promoting surfing worldwide, and a champion paddler and steersman.
Later in life, Duke Kahanamoku was revered as Hawaii’s official Ambassador of Aloha. Captured in his own words, he conveyed the power of the Aloha Spirit in the following, known as Duke’s Creed: “In Hawaii we greet friends, loved ones and strangers with Aloha, which means with love. Aloha is the key word to the universal spirit of real hospitality, which makes Hawaii renowned as the world’s center of understanding and fellowship. Try meeting or leaving people with Aloha. You’ll be surprised by their reaction. I believe it and it is my creed. Aloha to you.”
Major or Gold Level Sponsors of Duke’s OceanFest include the Hawaii Tourism Authority, Outrigger Hotels & Resorts, Duke’s Waikiki, Honolulu Star-Advertiser, Matson, Kona Brewing Company and AccesSurf.
Duke’s OceanFest Schedule of Events: August 18-26
All competitions, events and exhibit booths for Duke’s OceanFest are being staged at Kuhio Beach, Queen’s Surf in Waikiki, fronting Duke Kahanamoku’s statue, unless noted otherwise. The schedule is subject to change. Please visit www.dukesoceanfest.com for updated information.
Matson Menehune Surf Fest: Day 1 (8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.)
This special pro-style surf competition begins with the intent to help encourage surfing among Hawaii’s youths.
Na Koa Wounded Warrior Canoe Regatta (8:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m.)
This inspiring canoe regatta at will feature a series of exciting races manned by the brave Wounded Warriors of America’s Armed Forces, along with family members and retired service members.
Location: Fort DeRussy Beach.
Duke’s OceanFest Opening Ceremony (4:30 p.m.)
To conclude the first day of Duke’s OceanFest, competitors and fans are treated to a festive opening ceremony, featuring Hawaiian music, traditional hula dancing and highlighted by the always-popular decorating of Duke Kahanamoku’s majestic statue with beautiful fresh flower lei.
Location: Duke Kahanamoku Statue.
Matson Menehune Surf Fest: Day 2 (8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.)
Day two of this special pro-style surf competition is presented to help encourage surfing among Hawaii’s youths.
AccesSurf Welcoming Ceremony (5:00-7:00 p.m.)
The inspirational athletes who have overcome physical challenges to compete in surfing are honored with this opening ceremony. Location: Duke Kahanamoku Statue.
AccesSurf Presents Hawaii Adaptive Surf Championships: Day 1 (8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.)
Watermen and waterwomen athletes who have overcome physical challenges, including paralysis and amputation, compete in Day 1 of this pro-style surfing contest.
AccesSurf Presents Hawaii Adaptive Surf Championships: Day 2 (8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.)
Day 2 of this pro-style surfing contest continues featuring watermen and waterwomen athletes who have overcome physical challenges, including paralysis and amputation.
AccesSurf Presents Hawaii Adaptive Surf Championships: Day 3 (8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.)
Day 3 of this competition determines the winners of these athletes who have overcome physical challenges, including paralysis and amputation, in this pro-style surfing contest.
Duke’s Waikiki Amateur Longboard Classic: Day 1 (8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.)
Presented by Duke’s Waikiki, this two-day competition lets the amateurs of longboard surfing show off their skills in a pro-style surf contest to determine the champion of Waikiki Beach.
Pieology’s Pacific Tandem Contest: Day 1 (10:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.)
Day 1 of this two-day competition brings together terrific tandem surfers to showcase their artistry with the goal of being crowned as Waikiki’s top surfing duet.
Duke’s Waikiki Amateur Longboard Surf Classic: Day 2 (8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.)
Day 2 of this pro-style competition decides the amateur champion of longboard surfing of Waikiki Beach. Presented by Duke’s Waikiki.
Pieology’s Pacific Tandem Contest: Day 2 (8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.)
Day 2 determines the champions of Waikiki’s tandem surfing in 2018.
Calvin and Susie Presents Going to the Dogs SurFUR Contest (9:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m.)
Four-legged surfers will lead their owners into the waves of Waikiki for this fun, one-of-a-kind competition that awards prizes for the best solo surFUR and best tandem surFUR team.
Outrigger Duke Kahanamoku Foundation Waterman’s Hall of Fame (5:30 p.m.)
Each year, distinguished Hawaii watermen and waterwomen are honored for their lifetime of achievements with induction into the Hawaii Waterman Hall of Fame. This year’s honorees are Woody Brown, Dave Kalama, Kalani Vierra and Ann Yoshida. Tickets can be purchased online at https://dukefoundation.org/buy-a-ticket/. Location: Outrigger Canoe Club.
Waikiki Movie Night on the Beach: Free Admission (7:00 p.m. start)
It’s a pau hana experience anyone can enjoy! A big-screen showing on the sands of Waikiki Beach – and all for free. Location: Duke Kahanamoku Statue. Following are the shows.
- The Surfers Journal: Biographies – Rabbit Kekai (7:00 p.m.)
Rabbit Kekai was synonymous with Waikiki and surfing. See this presentation on one of surfing’s most beloved and influential pioneers shown, appropriately, on the sands of Waikiki Beach.
- Duke Kahanamoku: Hawaii’s Soul (8:00 p.m.)
This special one-hour documentary, produced by KGMB-TV, captures the remarkable life and enduring legacy of the legendary Duke Kahanamoku. This free showing will be on the sands of Waikiki Beach.
Duke Paoa Kahanamoku Sunrise Birthday Lei Draping (7:00 a.m.)
The 128th anniversary of Duke Kahanamoku’s birthday is honored with a special morning ceremony that features the decorating of his statue with beautiful fresh flower lei.
Location: Duke Kahanamoku Statue.
Outrigger Resorts Legends Surf Classic: Day 1 (8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.)
This two-day competition combines sponsored teams of amateur surfers with the sport’s legends in this pro-style surf meet. Net proceeds raised benefit ODKF’s scholarships and grants program.
Waikiki Movie Night on the Beach: Free Admission (7:00 p.m.)
It’s a special Aloha Friday celebration with the movie, Distance Between Dreams, while kicking back on the sands of Waikiki Beach – and all for free. Location: Duke Kahanamoku Statue.
- Distance Between Dreams (7:00 pm)
Distance Between Dreams, highlights one of the most historic years in big wave surfing at Jaws on the North Shore of Maui. This documentary puts you in the lineup and right in the impact zone of Jaws through the eyes of iconic surfer Ian Walsh.
Duke’s Waikiki Ocean Mile Swim (8:00 a.m.-11:00 a.m.)
This popular open ocean race along the Waikiki shoreline attracts hundreds of swimmers from Hawaii as well as the mainland and internationally. The race starts in front of Duke’s Waikiki restaurant.
Outrigger Resorts Legends Surf Classic: Day 2 (8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.)
Day 2 of this special pro-style surf competition for amateurs. Sponsored teams of amateur surfers are matched with the sport’s legends in a one-of-a-kind surf meet. Net proceeds raised benefit ODKF’s scholarships and grants program.
Outrigger Resorts Junior Beach Volleyball Tournament (8 a.m. – 6 p.m.)
Hawaii’s up-and-coming junior volleyball players will compete to be the champions of Waikiki Beach. Location: Kapiolani-Queen’s Sand Volleyball Courts.
Great Hawaiian Legends Luau (6:00 – 9:30 p.m.)
Good friends, great music, happy memories, and ono food are the hallmarks of Duke’s OceanFest’s annual beachfront Legends Luau.
Location: Waikiki Aquarium. Purchase tickets at the Honolulu Box Office.
Outrigger Resorts Adult Beach Volleyball Tournament (8:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m.)
Teams square off in a fun-filled tournament for the final beach volleyball competition of Duke’s OceanFest. Location: Kapiolani-Queen’s Sand Volleyball Courts.
Duke Kahanamoku Surfboard Waterpolo (8:30 a.m.-3:00 p.m.)
Six-person teams will play water polo on surfboards, the same way Duke Kahanamoku, his brothers and fellow beach boys did in Waikiki during the 1920s and 1930s. Location: Kapahulu Breakwall.
Red Bull Party Wave (8:30 a.m.-3:00 p.m.)
This event is fun! It combines creativity, camaraderie, teamwork, and lots of laughs for a competition unlike any other at Duke’s OceanFest. Watch as teams create their own floatable craft, perform a skit on the beach, and then attempt to surf the craft at Queen’s Surf.