Over fifteen hundred people, and that's a big crowd on Kauai, showed up this morning for this year's 31st Visitor Industry Charity Walk. The Charity Walk began at the Historic County Building, headed down Rice Street, turned left on Ho‘olako Street, went up Ka‘ana Street, turned left on Kapule Highway, left on Ahukini Road, turned left on Umi Street, and ended at the Historic County Building.
Streets were closed to accomdoate the large groups beginning at about 6:45 this morning. The CHARITY WALK is a statewide event that occurs simultaneously on Oahu, Maui, the Big Island and Kauai on the 3rd Saturday in May. In 2008, more than 9,500 walkers raised over $1.12 million and helped over 190 of our local charities. In 1974, the Hawai'i Hotel Association sponsored a charitable "Superwalk" to benefit one major charitable organization. In 1978, the Hawai'i Hotel Association members voted to extend the reach of support offered by the Walk's fund-raising capability. The Visitor Industry CHARITY WALK is the result of this decision. Over the years, the HHLA's annual walk has grown to become one of the largest single-day fundraising events by a non-profit organization in the State of Hawaii. Since its inception in 1978, over $20 million has been raised, helping hundreds of local charities throughout the State.
As with so many fundraisers in these challenging times, all of the numbers statewide were down. Despite the large turnout on a beautiful sunny morning in Lihue, the mass of people did not meet the goal of $200,000 as it was announced that total collections amounted to roughly $165,000.
Overall, the Walk, sponsored by the Hawai‘i Hotel & Lodging Association, raised a total of $925,000 statewide, states a release from McNeil Wilson. There were a total of 6,585 walkers taking part in the effort on O‘ahu, Maui, Kaua‘i and the Big Island to raise funds benefiting more than 100 Hawai‘i charities.The Walk is one of the largest single-day fundraisers in the state, providing an opportunity for the visitor industry to collectively give back to the local community.
One of my friends was telling me yesterday that our economy is like a two-legged stool. Those two legs he said are tourism and construction. Of course he's in construction so he may be a bit biased. Still, tourism is essential to our island economy and even with tourism down 25% for the year, it's great to the see the community come out and support this Charity Walk event
Ron Margolis, RA, CDPE, ABR Hawaii Life Real Estate Services 808.346.7095 email: firstname.lastname@example.org