Kumu Pa'a Kawika Foster blesses Port Stephens Outrigger Canoe Club's new Matahina outrigger canoe

A traditional Hawaiian blessing ceremony took place on a beach in Shoal Bay on November 1.

Port Stephens Outrigger Canoe Club welcomed Kumu Pa’a Kawika Foster and his assistant Manalani to bless its brand new Matahina outrigger canoe from Tahiti.

Kuma is 51 generations of unbroken lineage from Molokai and is a traditional practitioner of Hawaiian culture.

“We were thrilled to have Kumu Pa'a Kawika Foster to conduct the ceremony,” Mandy Robinson from the club said.

“He is a traditional practitioner of Hawaiian culture and traditions. His sharing style combines ancient wisdom with a modern approach.”

Kuma also blessed the paddlers and paddles.

In Polynesian cultures blessings and ceremonies are performed to ensure good fortune, that the spirit of the canoe is strong and to provide safe passage to all who travel/paddle in the canoe. 

“The blessing was very spiritual and emotional,” Robinson said.

“As an outrigger club we honour and respect the traditions of outrigger canoeing throughout the Pacific.”

The new club’s new canoe was designed and made in Tahiti and arrived in Australia three weeks ago.

An outrigger crew raced in the new canoe at Swansea Belmont on October 28 and led the field by more than 300 metres to its first win.

New members are welcome to try paddling at 8am on Sundays at Corlette Beach (near The Anchorage).

Or visit our portstephensoutriggers.com for more details.