Ikuna Koa Outrigger Canoe Club

Programs - Na 'Opio


Paddling Season runs from February to October. Practice times are Saturdays – 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm.
Other Na 'Opio events and activities occur year-round.


Na 'Opio 'o Ikuna Koa (the youth of Ikuna Koa) participate in both water and land training to prepare them to paddle competitively in local Outrigger Canoe regattas. They learn paddling techniques, water safety, the importance of teamwork, and to embrace the aloha spirit that surrounds the sport of Hawaiian Outrigger Canoe Paddling and Racing. ... And, they have fun while doing it.

Na Opio


In addition to an Outrigger Canoe Paddling athletic program, Na 'Opio 'o Ikuna Koa is a youth Hawaiian cultural development and immersion program. Open to Hawaiians – and Hawaiians at heart – our goal is to help children understand that cultural practices and values remain relevant in today's modern world, to help them develop a sense of personal pride and belonging, and to help each child understand basic Hawaiian values, with an emphasis on:

  • Aloha – Love, Compassion
  • 'Ohana – Family
  • Malama – Care for one another
  • Laulima – Cooperativeness
  • Lokahi – Unity, Balance
  • Kuleana - Responsibility
  • Koa – Courage
  • Ho'omau – Continue, Perpetuate, Preserve
  • Kupono – Honesty, Fairness, Righteousness
  • Ola kino maika'i – Healthy living
  • Aloha 'aina – Love for the land
  • Aloha ke kai – Love for the sea


In addition to their cohesive teamwork on the water, Na 'Opio activities include camping, going on "field trips," and participating in community events. It is a joy to see our Na 'Opio develop a sense of 'ohana with their teammates and sincerely enjoy the company of one another. Na Opio


Founded in 2008 by Gus Cervantes and Dan Smith, Ikuna Koa's Na 'Opio program continues to thrive and offer children and youth between the ages of 5-19 a cultural immersion and athletic program centered around the Hawaiian racing canoe. Children must know how to swim to participate in the water sports portion of the program and parents (or other adult caretakers) are expected to remain on-site during practices and races.


Na Opio

As with the wa'a (canoe), our keiki (children) are taught to respect and care for their hoe (paddle). Hoe are carried blades up, are typically blessed before use, and are provided an inoa (name) by the child. The children are taught about the Hawaiian tradition of naming – and the importance of both the literal meaning, and the kaona (hidden meaning)… Just like in Hawaiian poetry, an allusion is considered more beautiful than a plain statement. The keiki enjoy naming their hoe and it's fun to watch what they come up with ... These are a few:

  • Hanalike - Work Together. "Like" is the child's Hawaiian family name.
  • Hoelike – Paddle Together. "Like" is the child's Hawaiian family name.
  • Ka'analike – Share Together. "Like" is the child's Hawaiian family name.
  • Kala'e – Calm, Clear, Unclouded. Named after a Kamehameha Schools '89 roommate and Ka Lae (different spelling – means "The Point") - the southern-most point of the United States on the Big Island of Hawai'i, believed to have been the area in which the first Hawaiians landed, and the location of the green sand beaches.
  • Kekoa – Warrior. Would have been the name of the child's sister had she been a boy.
  • Makana – Gift. Would have been the name of the child's brother had he been a girl.

For more information about Ikuna Koa's Na 'Opio Program, please contact
Mei-Ling Marshall at 619-500-6562 or mei-ling@IkunaKoaOutriggerCanoeClub.com

A special mahalo nui loa to Na Makua (the Adults) of Ikuna Koa for their support of this Na 'Opio program.
Making a positive difference in the life of a child is no small thing.

For more information about our club please contact us at:

Paddling Location:
De Anza Cove, Mission Bay

Club Location:
San Diego Mission Bay
Boat & Ski Club
2606 North Mission Bay Drive
San Diego, Ca 92109