South Maui's Wild Dolphin Days Events
By Mark Harbison
August is the month for dolphins, and the Pacific Whale Foundation will be presenting several upcoming events and activities to entertain and educate residents and visitors alike. How many states can boast regular events like these? The stunning natural environment is just one of many features that make us feel lucky to call Maui home. Read on if you're interested in expanding your experience and education on these dynamic and intelligent creatures.
Free Talk on Maui County's Wild Dolphins: Pop in for a free talk with a slide and video presentation on the wild dolphins of Maui County sponsored by the Pacific Whale Foundation. It will be held at the Discovery Center in the lower level of the Ma'alaea Harbor Shops complex from 6-7:30pm on Saturday, August 11th. The presentation will be done by the Pacific Whale Foundation's odontocete (dolphin and toothed whale) research team. Think of all the interesting facts you could learn about Maui's very own dolphin populations!
Wild Dolphin Sand Sculpture Contest: If you can build a sand castle, maybe you can build a sand dolphin just as well. This fun little event is a test of creative skills and sand sculpting technique. As you might have guessed, kids love it. It's a free event, and prizes will be awarded for the best sculptures. You can enter as an individual, group, or family. Everyone who participates will get a free Wild Dolphin Guide and Wild Dolphin Poster. They'll have some equipment, like shovels and pails, but you're encouraged to bring your own. The contest is located at the north end of Keawakapu beach by Sarento's Restaurant from 9am-noon on August 11th, the same day as the talk.
Wild Dolphin Photo Safari: This is a hands-on photography workshop takes place out on the ocean where you can directly practice techniques for photographing dolphins. The Pacific Whale Foundation will take you on a cruise with their raft, Ocean Freedom. It will depart from the Lahaina Harbor at 6:30am and return at 10:30am. David Fleetham, wildlife photographer will be there to instruct, and Betsy Davidson, PWF dolphin researcher will be there to answer questions. The PWF actually guarantees dolphin sightings, or they will give you a free regular PWF Dolphin Watch Cruise to make up for it. Tickets are $99.95 for the photo safari.
If you need more information on any of these events, call (808) 249-8811. We hope you dolphin enthusiasts will take advantage of at least one of these events. The locations are especially convenient if you call South Maui home, and while kids of all ages are likely to enjoy the sand sculpture contest, older kids may also like to listen to the talk, and maybe even take part in the photo safari. Enjoy!