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Iolani Invitational
 
 

September 21, 2002 at Kualoa Ranch
windward Oahu, Hawaii

 
 


Coaches meeting under moonlit sky at Waikiki Beach
The Iolani Invitational coaches meeting was held Thursday evening in the rarest of settings -- penthouse suite, outdoor seating, balmy night, moonlight sky above, Waikiki beach below, and Diamond Head to the left. Coaches could be forgiven for missing a few of the instructions from meet managers Greg Char, Jim Rubasch, and Paul Shinkawa.

"Aloha," says Paul Shinkawa - Photos by Donna Dye

Ohana Reef Towers Hotel,
Meet Headquarters

first 3 years of the Iolani Invitational

The girls winner of the Iolani Invitational has gone on to win the national Foot Locker Cross Country Championships all three years of the meet's existence.

 

Schedule of Events

9/19/02
  • 4:00 p.m.-6:00p.m - Registration at Meet Headquarters in the penthouse at Ohana Reef Towers Hotel
  • 7:00-9:00 pm - Coaches Meeting at Meet HQ
9/20/02
  • "Free" day... enjoy Waikiki's 85 Degree weather
  • 4:00-5:00 p.m. - late registration at Meet HQ
  • 6:00 p.m. - Hosted "Pasta Feed" at Iolani School
9/21/02
  • 7:00-9:00 a.m. - Hosted continental breakfast at Meet HQ
  • 1:30 p.m. - Varsity Races
  • 4:00-5:00 p.m. - Awards Ceremony, followed by optional dinner
9/22/02
  • Fly home

 

Background

by the founders: Jim Rubasch (Boys) and Greg Char (Girls)

We started the meet for two reasons. 1) to have an additional Invitational type meet for our runners where they could compete for awards. 2) to have mainland competition to help raise the performance levels of local runners. This was especially important on the girls side. Hawaii is one of the few States left where the girls compete at 2 miles. We race 3 miles at our Invitational and it was our intent to prove to Hawaii and to Iolani that local girls can not only race 3 miles, but can be competitive with their mainland counterparts.

We did not originally intend to have a huge meet. We wanted to keep it small and intimate with a few mainland schools. The 1st year we had two mainland schools, the 2nd year we had four, and last year we had two. This past Fall Paul Shinkawa approached us about turning the meet into something big and we agreed as long as the meet would continue to have a personal, intimate feel for our guests.

Iolani School runs girls volleyball and boys basketball tournaments which are highly regarded on a National level. We hope to do the same with our Cross Country Invitational.

The Invitational is not run on the Iolani Campus. It is held on the windward side of Oahu about 45 minutes from Waikiki. The reason is that the Iolani campus and its surroundings are FLAT and not conducive for an Invitational meet. We decided to have our meet at Kualoa Ranch beacuse it offers beautiful surroundings and great conditions for a cross country meet. The course is mostly dirt trails with several challenging uphills and downhills.

the "Aloha Spirit"

Message from Paul Shinkawa, meet organizer:

We run a good meet with many factors contributing to our meet’s success, including:

1) the "Aloha Spirit" of our group and meet... and the planning of additional events for our mainland visitors;
2) the spectacular natural beauty of Kualoa Ranch (site of the filming of Jurassic Park) and the support of Kualoa Ranch;
3) the support of our volunteer group;
4) the support of Iolani School and its running program;
5) the support of Outrigger/Ohana Hotels;
6) the support of our local running community.

Those who attend soon realize they have participated in a meet that is second to none... and for some our meet has led to additional good fortune. The last 3 girl’s winners of the Foot Locker National High School Cross Country Championships (Amber Trotter, Sara Bei & Victoria Chang) participated in our meet and began their XC seasons with a “win” at Kualoa Ranch.

Our goal is to share our "aloha spirit" and the road to good fortune with as many visiting competitive runners that we can properly host.

 

Meet contact: Greg Char

4th Iolani Invitational - September 21, 2002
a high school cross country meet on Kualoa Ranch, Oahu Hawaii, site of filming of Jurassic Park
Meet HQ hotel: Ohana Reef Tower, 227 Lewes St., Waikiki Beach, 808-924-8844 www.outrigger.com
Hotel contact Michele Nagamine (808) 921-6871, michele.nag[email protected]
Entry Contact: Greg Char (808) 689-0132 or
[email protected] - James Rubasch [email protected]

 


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