March 25th, 2020
In 2015, then HCRA President Walter Vierra and then HCRA Race Commissioner Bo Campos began communicating with the International Va`a Association (IVF) to have HCRA host the IVF world championships in Hawaii.
Hawaii had previously hosted IVF regattas in 1988 in Honolulu, and 2004 in Hilo.
The IVF sanctions worldwide outrigger canoe paddling, and has held regattas in Australia, Brazil, California, Canada, Fiji, New Caledonia, New Zealand, Samoa and Tahiti.
Through Bo and Walter's communications, the IVF Board of Directors selected Hilo for the 2020 IVF World Championships , and the work began to organize the many activities involved.
Unfortunately, the worldwide Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic necessitated the IVF Board of Directors to evaluate the 2020 Sprints, and on March 21, IVF President Lara Collins issued a statement cancelling the event.
In planning and organizing the World Championships, HCRA, and in particular Race Commissioner Samantha Moikeha, reached out to our statewide Hawaiian community and we need to recognize and
thank you for your support and cooperation. There are so many of you we need to say mahalo nui loa to that we can't list all, but we can start by recognizing Hawaii County Departments,
Mayor Harry Kim and Director Maurice Messina. The state and county agencies along with our travel industry partners, and local businesses and organizations were there and waiting for us to tell them what we needed.
With any event there are volunteers who support by bringing their energy, and participation, and we were fortunate to have the numbers of you who got involved.
We also couldn't have done it without our HCRA Association members and paddlers. Mahalo to all of you.
We also want to thank President Lara Collins and the IVF Board of Directors. You needed to make a very difficult decision, and we respect you for that.
While HCRA was not able to host the World Championships, we were able to establish relationships, and bonds that we can continue to share as we look to the future.
As in outrigger canoe paddling, it takes a team to accomplish our goals, and we are blessed to have an outstanding team..