The family of surfing legend Eddie Aikau says the big wave contest named in his honor won't be held this season.
Aikau family spokeswoman Cynthia Scrima said Wednesday the withdrawal of the contest's sponsor and problems getting a permit forced the move.
The Aikaus obtained a permit from Honolulu's Department of Parks and Recreation. But Scrima says they don't have sufficient time and resources to plan and hold the event this winter.
She says the family will be ready to hold "The Eddie" during the 2018-2019 season. She says they already have a permit for next season and are searching for a new lead sponsor.
The prestigious contest is held in Waimea Bay on Oahu's North Shore. It's only called when waves reach heights of at least 20 feet.
The Aikau Family released the following statement:
Eddie Aikau Family Announce No EDDIE For 2017,
With A Renewed Return In 2018!
Pupukahi I holomua
(Unite To Move Forward)
Aikau Family Honors Eddie Aikau Legacy & Hawaiian Cultural Tradition
The Aikau 'Ohana (Family) of Hawaii have devoted their lives to honoring & perpetuating the legacy of their late Brother, Legendary Surfing Champion & Hawaiian Waterman, Eddie Aikau; who lost his life trying to save his fellow crewmembers aboard the Hokule'a Polynesian Voyaging Canoe in 1978. Eddie's legacy, and the preservation of Hawaiian Culture for all future generations, is the driving force behind THE EDDIE, the annual Big Wave Invitational Surf Contest in Memory of Eddie Aikau held at Waimea Bay.
It is with heavy hearts the Aikau Family were forced to make the difficult decision to not hold THE EDDIE this year due to the unforeseen 11th hour withdrawal of Quiksilver as THE EDDIE Sponsor, and unexpected delays in the permitting process. The Family feels there is insufficient time to properly plan and hold THE EDDIE this year, and lacks the proper resources to maintain the high integrity of this extraordinary Hawaiian Cultural Event. Maintaining the quality and integrity of the EDDIE for the people and State of Hawaii, and all surfers & Eddie fans worldwide, is of utmost importance to the Aikaus.
E Kulia I Ka Nu'u (Strive To Reach The Highest, Do Your Best)
The Aikaus thank Quiksilver and the World Surf League (WSL) for their past support; and WSL for stepping in to make the 2015-2016 EDDIE possible. The Family appreciates Red Bull's support & interest in being the Media Partner for THE EDDIE. The Family also acknowledges the continued kokua & support of the City & County of Honolulu's Department of Parks & Recreation, and look forward to working with the Department on the 2018-2019 and future EDDIEs. The Aikau 'Ohana also wish to express their sincere mahalo to the Honolulu Police Department, Honolulu Fire Department, and City & County Lifeguards for their enthusiastic, professional and invaluable assistance in connection with THE EDDIE. An extra special mahalo from the Aikau 'Ohana goes out to the Hawaiian Water Patrol (HWP) for HWP's remarkable bravery & expertise in protecting all at Waimea Bay.
A'ohe Hana Nue Ka Alu'ia (No Task Is Too Big When Done Together)
The Aikaus especially wish to extend their Me ka Mahalo nui (deep gratitude) to all the people of Hawaii. We are all part of the "kapa" (cloth) that make up the beauty of today's Hawaiian people. THE EDDIE was started for the people of Hawaii as a way to encourage, enlighten and inspire all to live more like Eddie Aikau - to share Aloha with all you encounter throughout your life; spreading Aloha to your friends, as well as, your adversaries.
Kapu Aloha E Lokahi E! (He Who Lives In Harmony Within Himself, Lives Pono)
THE EDDIE is more than just a surf contest, it has become a Hawaiian Tradition held with special reverence by the Aikaus whose connection to Waimea Bay dates back more than 100 years to their Great, Great Grandfather, Kahuna Nui HewaHewa. HewaHewa, an expert in all Hawaiian Culture and Life, was given formal responsibility of Waimea, from deep in the Valley out to the crystal blue waters of the Bay. His protection of this sacred Aina (land) lives on with the Aikau 'Ohana today, and is part of their uncompromising kuleana (responsibility) to Hawaii.
He ‘Ike ‘Ana Ia I Ka Pono (One Has Seen The Right Thing To Do And Has Done It)
The Aikau's devotion to Hawaiian Culture is alive with THE EDDIE, and through the Eddie Aikau Charitable Foundation and its programs; including the popular School Essay Contest based on Eddie for all Junior & High School Students throughout the Islands.
E Hana Malie (Take Your Time and Do A Good Job)
The Aikau Family is already working with the Honolulu Department of Parks & Recreation on the 2018-2019 EDDIE, and look forward to the Department's timely issuance of the permits for next Year's Event. The Family is also currently speaking with potential new Sponsors who have expressed strong interest in THE EDDIE; and are very open to speaking with all interested parties about new Sponsorship opportunities to carry on Eddie Aikau's legacy and this prestigious Hawaiian tradition.
The Aikau 'Ohana are very grateful to the people of Hawaii and the surfing community for their continued support of their efforts to malama (preserve) the memory of Hawaiian Big Wave Surfer & Waterman, Eddie Aikau. The Aikaus are excited about the future of THE EDDIE, and look forward to the 2018-2019 North Shore surfing season when EDDIE WILL GO!