The safe and shallow nature of Kahalu‘u Bay makes it an ideal home for young marine species.It is not unusual to see many small turtles and schools of young fish close to shore but recently, ReefTeachers discovered something new at the Bay- a group of young triathletes!
On August 28th over 50 young athletes joined the Second Annual LavaKids Aquathon.Thanks to the hard work and dedication of volunteers and County Lifeguards, Kahalu‘u Bay was once again transformed into race central with an official competitor check-in, medical tent, and swim-run transition area extending through the parking lot.
Participants began arriving for registration at 7:00 AM.They gathered around the ReefTeach tent to look at the storyboards and build their own special reef on our reef ecology board.Caroline talked about proper reef etiquette guidelines and invited the group to become ReefTeachers themselves. Many participants were veterans from last year’s event so they shared what they liked most about the fish and marine life at Kahalu‘u.Shortly thereafter the group listened to a motivational sports talk with one of Hawai‘i’s own triathletes and participated in a stretching and warm-up session with the one and only LavaGirl.
It wasn’t long before it was time to race!The events kicked off with the 200-meter keiki dash which is always a big hit as little ones and parents race back and forth on the beach.Each child received a medal after crossing the finish line.The next event was 7-10 years competing in a 50-meter swim and ½ mile run around Keauhou Beach Resort which was followed by the final event, 10-14 year olds 100-meter swim and 1 mile run through the Resort. Lifeguards directed swimmers in the water as they raced around the buoys.Upon exiting the water the athletes transitioned right into the run around the Keauhou Beach Resort.
The day ended with a great awards ceremony and snacks for all.It was a wonderful opportunity to celebrate their success.We look forward to seeing our new ReefTeachers at the Bay this year.This fantastic event preceded Sunday’s Lavaman Keauhou Triathlon. For more information visit:www.lavamantriathlon.com/keauhou/