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Star-Bulletin Sports

Tuesday, March 14, 2000


Wahine have waves
to call their own

By Linda Aragon
Special to the Star-Bulletin


Makaha girls gave a clinic this past weekend on how to surf with aloha - Leeward style.

Some 140 girls spent the Saturday and Sunday competing in the fourth Westside Wahine Surf Jam. Sponsored by the Westside Wahine Surf Team, the contest drew water women from Oahu, the neighbor islands, California, and beyond for competition in long board, short board, body board and canoe surfing events.

Competitors ranged in ability and ages from the baby girl division (elementary school) to the Tutu division (50-years and older) where famed veterans like Jeannie Chesser ripped even in the 1-to 2-foot surf.

"It was fun,'' said 18-year-old body boarder Kathy Miyamoto who, along with her twin sister, Evelyn, was in the finals Sunday.

"Our parents don't always let us surf on Sunday, because we have church," Evelyn Miyamoto said.

The club and contest were started by the late Pua Mokuahi and Rell Sunn, both legendary Makaha surfers.

"It was a group of women that got together," said Kathy Terada, one of the club's founding members. "We were working women and mothers and we wanted to show that surfing was a sport for all ages."

The contest is very ohana oriented. Although it is an all-female event, "the guys help out (as water safety patrol, judges and officials),'' said world-class long boarder Desiree DeSoto.

"They have daughters surfing and wives surfing. It's community. It's like family."

Haze Wentling finished her surfing events Sunday morning in time to cheer her 10-year-old daughter, Tazr'e.

DeSoto said the competitiveness is somewhat removed when surfing in a contest with friends and neighbors.

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