Red Friday: High School students stay culturally connected

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Photo by Dylan Godsey

Students cheer during Red Friday, Oct. 21, 2011. Students dressed in red to show support for Hawaiian culture and played makahiki games.

Amanda Lee

By Dylan Godsey, sports co-editor

PUKALANI- Spears flying through the air, drums beating, and victors crowned. This was the scene of this Friday’s events and demonstrations by the students of Kamehameha Maui High School in the high school quad.

Throughout the day, the high school was a sea of red as the students patiently wandered from class to class anxiously waiting for the Red Friday events to be held at the end of the day.

“I thought it turned out well. The kids like to aha and watch. They like to cheer and support their friends and classmates rather than compete themselves,” said Kumu Kapulani, Hawaiian History teacher at KSM.

The high school students got a chance to compete in and play different Hawaiian Makahiki games like ‘ulu maika, hakamoa, and spear throwing.

The hakamoa station was the most popular. Students of all grades and sizes competed in the chicken fight game, egged on by a crowd that called on their most promising athletes to challenge others.

After 35 minutes of the students trying their luck at the different Hawaiian games stations, teams from each class exhibited their skills in tug-o-war,  sham battle and foot races.

The day’s competitions weren’t for prizes or points. Rather they were for building class, school and cultural pride.

Senior Makana Pundyke won the foot race for the senior wahine, and Stephen Barut won the boys race for the junior kane.

“It [the win] was good. I’m so happy. I did it [won] for the seniors,” said Pundyke.

In the sham battle, the combined senior/sophomore team won with more of its members left standing than the junior/freshman team.

In tug-o-war, the freshmen first defeated the juniors in the semifinals. Then, the seniors beat the sophomores in their semifinal match. In the end, the seniors won it all out with a coordinated and rhythmic tugging effort that made short work of the freshman team.

“I love Red Fridays they bring us together. The best part was the end when we came together and did I Ku Mau Mau,” Pundyke said.