2012: Events and News
2011: Events and News
Kau Wela (Dry Season) 2011
Hoʻoilo (Wet Season) 2011
2010: Events and News
December 2009: Training Sail to Palmyra
December 2008: Plan for a Training Sail to Palmyra and Christmas Island
January 2008: Ku Holo Mau (Voyage to Satawal) and Ku Holo Komohana (Voyage to Japan)
September 2006: Hokualaka‘i Launching; 2006 Malama Wa‘a (Caring for the Canoe)
August 2006: Kapu Na Keiki: Youth Training Program
December 2004: Navigating Change: NWHI Voyage Completed
Winter 2003: Northewestern Hawaiian Islands Voyage Postponed; Sail to Nihoa
Summer 2003: Marine Education Training Center; 2003 Statewide Sail
Spring 2002: Plans for Northewestern Hawaiian Islands Voyage
Summer 2001: Ocean Learning Academy
Spring 2001: 2001 Statewide Sail
Ho‘oilo (Rainy Season) 1999: Closing the Triangle: the Quest for Rapanui; Malama Hawai‘i Initiative
Kau (Dry Season) 1998: Restoring Hokule‘a; Center for Marine Sciences
Kau (Dry Season) 1997: Aloha, Wrighto; Project Ho‘olokahi
Ho‘oilo (Rainy Season) 1996-1997: Malama Hawai‘i: 1996-97 Statewide Sail
Ho‘oilo (Rainy Season) 1995-1996: Exploration Learning Center Launched
Kau (Dry Season) 1995: A Safe Successful 1995 Voyage; Northwest and West Coast Tours
Makali‘i (November-December) 1994: North to Hawai‘i, the Marquesas Connection, by Ben Finney
Hilinama (August-September) 1994: Hawai‘iloa Sea Trials, after Modification
Ka‘aona (May–June) 1994: Training and Education Sails; 1992 Voyage: 4. The Voyage Home
Nana (February–March) 1994: 1992 Voyage: 3. Sailing in the Cook Islands
Makali‘i (November-December) 1993: First Sea Trials for Hawai‘iloa Completed; Modifications Begin; 1992 Voyage: 2. Sailing in Tahiti
Fall 1993: Blessing and Launching Hawai‘iloa; 1992 Voyage: 1. Hawai‘i to Tahiti
March 1992: Building Hawai‘iloa
December 1990: Native Hawaiian Culture and Arts Program; search for logs to build Hawai‘iloa
March-April 1984: Announcing the 1985-1987 Voyage of Rediscovery
August 1975: A Voyage into Hawai‘i’s Past (1976 Voyage to Tahiti), by Ben Finney
1974: Plans for Launching of Hokule‘a on March 8, 1975
September 1974: Announcement of 3 day Polynesian Sailing Workshop at Kualoa Park
April 1974: Wa‘a Kaulua...Double Canoe, by Herb Kane. (Training on Nalehia, a 40 ft. double-hulled sailing canoe built by Ben and Ruth Finney in 1966; plans to build Hokule‘a.)

PVS Newsletter / Fall 1993

The Blessing and Launching of Hawai'i Loa

Master Canoe Builder Wright Bowman, Jr, who oversaw the building of Hawai‘iloa, led her out of the halau.

On the morning of July 24, 1993 at Pier 36, two and a half years of work on the voyaging canoe Hawaii Loa came to fruition. After the sounding of the pu, Parley Kanaka'ole offered a kahea chant and Master of ceremony Wayne
Chang introduced the blessing and launching program.

The sky was heavily overcast, and gust of rain swept down from the Ko'olau mountains all morning long. Rainbows arched above the green hills and grey city. One was reminded of the blessing of the magical canoe of Rata, the Tahitian voyaging hero, many centuries ago:

"At daybreak the artisans invoked the presence of Ta'aroa of the river in darkness, presenting him with some sennit as a peace offering, and his acceptance was soon made manifest by his sending them a heavy shower of rain to immerse the ship, which was their way of performing the ceremony of fa'ainu (making it drink).... Then with the little elves clinging to the ship, the mountain breeze caught it and wafted it high up on the shining clouds, which bore elves and ship far beyond the land and out over the open sea, where they descended by the rainbow... and set the canoe as lightly as a bird upon the waters" (Teuira Henry,Ancient Tahiti, 489).

Kahu 'Ai Kapu Bert Barber conducted the 'ai kapu ritua -the offering up of sacred foods to the Hawaiian canoe deities, foremost of which is Kci. Barber was assisted by his ha'i'olelo (spokesman) Keone Nunes.

The foods prepared by Barber were kumu, ulu, and hiwa coconuts, traditionally used in ceremonies. Ka-huna Pule (master of prayer) Kalena Silva accepted these sacred foods and offered them to the Kahuna Kdlai Wa'a (master canoe builder) Wright Bowman, Jr., and his workers, all of whom were seated in the kapu area.

Kahuna Pule Silva then blessed Hawai'i Loa and lifted the kapu which had been placed on the canoe. Finally, the canoe was lowered into the water and floated there, as light as a bird.

Haku Mele (composer) Keli'i Tau'a, assisted by Charles Kaupu, recited a genealogical chant he had composed for Hawal‘i Loa, telling of the unsuccessful search for logs in the koa forests of Hawai‘i and the gifting of nvo spruce logs by the Haida and Tlingit people of Alaska; the naming
of the logs Kutx ah yunahha kah ya tun ("Star is the constellation steering by the star"); the naming of the canoe after Hawai'i Loa, who discovered Hawai'i; the carrying on of the voyaging tradition by Nainoa Thompson and his navigators and crews; the building of the canoe by Wright Bowman, Jr., and his workers.

Keli‘i Tau‘a blessing Hawai‘iloa

As the mele inoa was recited, the canoe was rigged and a lauhala sail hoisted. Lei of maile and 'ie'ie were used for adornment. Then the canoebuilders boarded the canoe and dipped their paddles into the water for the symbolic first voyage of Hawaii Loa. They chanted "la Wa'a
Nul," which was used at the launching of Hokule‘a at Kualoa, O'ahu, in 1975:

Ia wa'a nui (That large canoe)
Ia wa'a kioloa (That long canoe)
Ia wa'a peleleu (That broad canoe)
A lele mamala (Let chips fly)
A manu o uka (Bird of the upland)
A manu o kai (Bird of the lowland)
'I'iwi polena (Yellow honcycreeper)
A kau ka hoku (The stars appear)
A kau i ka malama (The daylight arrives)
A pae i kula (Land on shore)
'Amama ua noa (Amama, the kapu is free).

As the chant ended, Tau'a asked the canoe's owner, the Native Hawaiian Culture and Arts Program, represented by chairman Clayton Hee, if he found the canoe maika'i (good). He answered "maika'i!" and the ceremony ended with the sounding of the pu.

Our family from Alaska, represented by Judson Brown and Byron Mallot, were honored next and acknowledged for their generous donation of the spruce logs for Hawaii Lods hulls. The day ended with speeches and ho'okupu to Hawaii Loa. Kahu Kalili offered a Christian blessing. Food and
entertainment provided closure to this special day.

Hawai'i Loa has been built to recover Hawaiian canoe-building traditions and to recreate early settlement voyages to Hawai'i from the Marquesas islands, over 1600 years ago. Scholars believe such voyages took place, because of similarities between the languages, artifacts, culture, and physical characteristics of the peoples of the two island groups. In 1995, the Polynesian Voyaging Society plans to sail Hawaii Loa from Nuku Hiva in the Marquesas to Hawai'i, a 2,200-mile voyage.

The hulls of Hawaii Loa were designed by Dick Rhodes and Rudy and Barry Choy. Wright Bowman, Jr., Wally Froiseth, and Nainoa Thompson designed the other parts of the canoe. The construction of the 57-foot voyaging canoe by Kahuna Mai Wa'a Wright Bowman, Jr., under funding by the Native Hawaiian Culture and Arts Program, began in 1991. The kuamo'o, or hulls, of Hawai‘iloa have been carved from Alaskan spruce logs; koa has been used for the manu, or curved bow and stern pieces, as well as for the mo'o, or side pieces above the gunwales. The 'iako, or cross pieces, and kia, or masts, are made from ‘ohia logs. The railings are made from hau. Some
sennit has been used in the lashings. Lily Jane Nunies and Elizabeth Akana wove the lau hala sail. Mary Lou Kekuewa made the lei hulu (feather lei).

On the morning of July 31, 1993 Hawai'i Loa proudly sailed into Poka‘i Bay. The canoe was welcomed warmly and generously by the people of Nandkuli and Wai'anae. Hawaii Loa was accompanied by Hokule; E'ala; Mauloa; and Maikai Roa. The event, entitled “Eia Hoi Na Holowa'a” (Behold the Voyaging Canoes)" was a celebration of the Hawaiian seafaring and canoe building heritage.

Once again, the volunteers of PVS, came through, this time led by Moku Froiseth and Paige Barber. They organized and carried out both the blessing and launching of Hawaii Loa and “Eia Hoi Na Holowa'a.” Randle Fong coordinated the programs for both events. Maholo to Paige, Moku, Randie of Kamehameha Schools and all the volunteers.

1992 Voyage, No Na Mamo, “For the Children”: 1. Voyage to Tahiti

Tommy Holds – As We Knew Him

by Keali‘ipu‘aimoku & Wallace Froiseth

[On August 23, 1993, Tommy Holmes, one of the founders of the Polynesian Voyaging Society, died of a heart attack while paddling an outrigger canoe off Waikiki. One of his lasting legacies is The Hawaiian Canoe, the most comprehensive modern study of the subject, published in 1981 and reprinted in a second edition in September, 1993. On August 28, his ashes were carried out to sea by the Hokule‘a and scattered off Waikiki. Hundreds attended the ceremony.]

Tommy Holmes was like another hanai son to Wally and me. We both had the deepest respect and admiration for him and supported his many interests and human causes. He was very respectful of everyone. One of Tommy's main interests was the Polynesian Voyaging Society and Hokule‘a. He was the driving force to raise funds to make the first voyage possible.

Tommy was an exceptional waterman; he was adept at everything to do with the ocean and ocean sports. We first knew him when he was very young through the sport of surfing and canoeing, at which he was very skillful. He was always looking for new challenges and ways to appreciate nature. When he participated in anything he did it with all his heart and soul, all the way and whatever it took. He helped with the challenging food preparations for Hokule‘aa’s first voyage. His careful arrangements to obtain the proper plants and animals, such as Maxwell, the pua‘a (pig), Hoku, the Hawaiian ‘ilio (dog), and the proper moa (chicken) showed us what an interested and dedicated person he was. In Tahiti after the first trip Tommy assisted us in planting at Tahiti's Gauguin Museum grounds all the plants he had cared for on the trip. Tommy was a person always wanting to do the best job he could, as shown in his definitive work The Hawaiian Canoe. We're sure that Tommy had a sense of fulfillment, happiness and peace in creating all of these interests for all of us to enjoy.

Over dinner Tommy and Moku discussed their high cholesterol counts, which he accepted philosophically, almost like it was no big thing and he would not slow down. He continued to do the things he wanted to do in his life. Through all of this we both vowed to take better care of our conditions. For Tommy we feel we must accept his death as the loss of a creative individual. His mind was precious, but mortal. Aloha Tommy, we love you and deeply appreciate having known you. We’ll all miss you.

We also mourn the passing of Parley Kanaka'ole. Heartfelt sympathy to all his family and friends. He played important roles in the ceremonies for the blessing and launching of Mauloa and Hawai'i Loa and the celebration of voyaging, at Poka‘i Bay. His presence will be missed; his mana remains with us.

The 45-foot E'ala ('Awaken!') was built in 1979 at Poka‘i Bay to revive the art of canoe building on the Wai'anae Coast. It was refurbished by the Polynesian Voyaging Society in 1993 for use in crew training and educational programs.

Photo from the Wai‘anae Hawaiian Civic Club website

The 27-foot Mauloa was built at Honaunau under canoe builder and navigator Mau Piailug from Satawal, Micronesia. The hull was carved from a koa log donated hy the Bishop Estate. Workers used stone, then steel adzes. The project was coordinated by Clay Bertelmann.

The PVS Vision

Ho‘olokahi: to bring about unity and harmony among humanity, nature, and spiritual forces

Mission & Goals

The mission of the Polynesian Voyaging Society (PVS) is to contribute toward a safe and healthy future for Hawai'i. Its goals are:

Guiding Values

Aloha ‘Aina: to understand the interdependence of humanity and the environment

‘Imi ‘Ike: to seek knowledge

Lokomaik‘'i: to share with each other

Malama: to care for each other

Na‘au Pono: to possess a deep sense of justice which fosters positive relationships among people

PVS Officers and Board of Directors

Officers: Myron "Pinky" Thompson, President; Kapua Lindo, Vice President; Virginia Elliott, Treasurer

Directors: Gilbert Ane, Moku Froiseth, Wally Froiseth, Harry Ho, Rey Jonsson, Eric Martinson, Jerry Muller, Laura Thompson, Michael Tongg, Nathan Wong, Bob Worthington, August Yee

Consultant: Ben Finney