November 4, 2023 | Leg 9, Day 13

November 4, 2023 | Leg 9, Day 13. 
Newport to Dana Point, California 

Welina. We wish to express our deepest gratitude to our ‘ohana in Newport for taking such great care of us. You nourished our minds, bodies and spirits – mahalo! We’ll always remember you.

As we made our way to Dana Point, we were blessed with nice winds so we opened the sails and let Māmā Hōkūle’a breathe; free, she danced for a couple hours and loved every minute of it! We were honored to have on board Heidi Lucero, Chairwoman of the Juaneno Band of Mission Indians, Acjachemen Nation, and to view her peoplesʻ tribal territories from sea. She talked about our similar love for the land and ocean, our same concerns and how we are family.

We were greeted by an armada of water vessels as we entered Dana Point Harbor. The dock at Ocean Institute was filled with hundreds of people eager to give their aloha to her. Among them was Lono Kollers, who is from Makakilo and now lives in California and who was instrumental in organizing our welcome ceremony and events in Marina Del Rey. He presented Captain Tamiko with an ipu he carved for her, saying he was inspired by her story of seeking knowledge and working her way to captain and that he wanted her to know “we are with her and she is with us.”

We thank everyone for giving Hōkūle’a and our crew a warm welcome, it was truly amazing!