Waimea Parks and Recreation offers a wide variety of activities throughout the year, and Melissa Samura wants to make sure the community knows about them.
To help encourage participation, the recreation director came up with the idea for the first Waimea Sports Expo, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., on Saturday, July 27. The Waimea Park event will feature nine different sports, music, food booths, fitness demonstrations and much more.
“This is an opportunity for people to test out a new sport,” said Samura. “Sport clinics in basketball, tennis, soccer and track and more will be offered for all ages, children through kupuna.”
Samura said as recreation director, everyone books their practices and sporting events through her. She was able to see how many different organizations and sport clubs are in Waimea, and she wanted to bring the sporting teams and clubs together in one event.
Encouraging keiki to develop a lifelong interest in sports and giving families a positive, safe environment to exercise is the mission of Waimea Parks and Recreation.
“This will be a good experience, especially for the kids,” said Samura. “There are many people who don’t know about programs in our community, and this is a great time to encourage youth, families and adults to sign up.”
Recreational clubs use the Waimea Community Center to teach Tahitian dance, table tennis and taiko drumming to all age groups. Samura said there will be exhibits in each of these activities. Other sport clinics featured will be volleyball, football, baseball, tennis and wrestling. The rugby club wasn’t able to make it this year, but Samura hopes to offer rugby as well as other sports at next year’s event.
“We’ve had so many people help sponsor this event, who have contributed funds or services to make this happen,” said Samura. “Mama’s House will be doing an equipment exchange with shoes and sporting goods from their thrift shop.”
Five Mountain Fitness Center in Waimea will stage demonstrations of their Zumba and kettlebell workouts. The Alex and Duke DeRego Foundation, which runs lifeguard programs, will demonstrate ocean water safety. Health and wellness will be spotlighted with massage and facials. And the concession booths will be run by the teams putting on the clinics.
“There will be adult free play for volleyball, as well as three-on-three, and five-on-five basketball teams on the courts,” Samura said. “Val Hanohano and I will be running the track and field portion, as we want to re-introduce Waimea to the county’s track program.”
Jerry Sakamoto will be hosting the “home run derby,” offering prizes to kupuna who can hit a 14-inch ball the farthest. Samura said the contest will offer a healthy dose of competition.
On the entertainment stage, live music will be offered up with special guests Lorenzo’s Army and Pacific Rhythm. A water slide and a jumping castle will be set up for the keiki.
“We want to show that by everyone working together, we can get more participation,” Samura said. “This is a great chance to get people to pre-register for sports or other programs, to get on mailing lists, and to know about all of the great activities out there.”
For more information, contact Samura at the Waimea Parks & Recreation office at 887-3014.