First-timers get the best out of waka ama whanau day

By Georgina Harris

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FUN: Te Kohu Palmer, 9, (left) and Halarn Mason, 11, enjoy themselves at the Ruamata Waka Ama Whanau Day. PHOTO/STEPHEN PARKER
FUN: Te Kohu Palmer, 9, (left) and Halarn Mason, 11, enjoy themselves at the Ruamata Waka Ama Whanau Day. PHOTO/STEPHEN PARKER

There was fun and learning aplenty at the Ruamata Waka Ama Club whanau day.

Event organiser Yvonne Rogers said everyone had a fabulous time on Saturday.

"It was our come and have a go day. Eight kids, between the ages of 4 and 14, and their parents came along.

"The weather was nice. The rain held off and it wasn't that windy."

She said it was their first time trying out waka ama and they loved it.

"They didn't want to get off. They tried out the two-man and single waka ama."

She said the parents were in awe of what their children were able to achieve.

During the two-hour session, held at the Ngongotaha club base, the children were taught about the waka, its different parts and what to do if the waka was to flip.

"Safety is paramount. We wear life jackets and ensure they fit correctly, and before we go out on the water we do a safety drill," said Ms Rogers.

The Ruamata Waka Ama Club has at least 150 members who compete in local, national and international events.

Ms Rogers said regionals would be held in December with nationals held in January.

Several club members would also be trialling over the coming months to get a place at the 2017 IVF World Distance Championships to be held in Tahiti in June.

Ms Rogers said new members were always welcome at the club, and she wanted to thank those who had come out on Saturday.

- Rotorua Daily Post

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