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Hui Wharram 2014 - Event Report

By Dan Kunz

The 2014 Hui Wharram Provided a Sampling of Sizes and Styles.

The 2014 Spring Hui Wharram (Hui is Hawaiian for “Gathering”) held in Islamorada Florida at the famous Lorelei Cabana Bar (www.loreleicabanabar.com) was a success again this year. Nearly 70 people attended during the weekend and spent quite some time crawling all over and sailing the six Wharram catamarans that made it to the event. More than fifty of these visitors attended our Dutch treat dinner on Saturday evening and many were pleased to win one of the door prizes.

The Fabulous Florida Keys provided plenty of sunshine but lots of wind, unfortunately a little too much and from exactly the wrong direction for some to get here. Quite a bit of chop and some very heavy seas beyond the reef in the Florida Straits toward the Bahamas dissuaded even some of our usual stalwarts. Isn’t that often the case??? Mother nature and Poseidon are a powerful team, especially when they are a little annoyed with each other!

Hui Wharram attendees on Pahi 31
Brandon Gamble Photo of Attendees on Pahi 31 at 2014 Hui Wharram

We were fortunate to have a new build Tiki 38 and a new build Hitia 17 here. Both beautifully executed. The 38 left for Panama after the Hui. There was also a Tiki 21, Tiki 26, Pahi 31 and a Tangaroa 36 to see…a good variety of styles and sizes to see and compare. Some of the attendees are active builders and others are considering which model they want to start on or are looking to buy. The Chamber of Commerce (www.islamoradachamber.com) provided informational packages for everyone as well as Keys charts, the Free Press (www.keysnews.com) provided local papers, Southwinds Magazine (www.southwindsmagazine.com) provided copies of the latest issue so everyone could get a feel for sailing in the southeast USA and Cruising Outpost Magazine (www.cruisingoutpost.com) the most widely read and fun sailing rag out there... provided copies of their latest issue as well.

Wharram catamarans lined up at the Hui
Brandon Gamble Photo of (L to R) Tiki 21, Hitia 17, Pahi 31, Tiki 26 at 2014 Wharram Hui (Gathering)

We had door prizes provided by:

Each year we also give out our most coveted “Host Awards” (meaning I decide what the categories are and who wins them!) - these are the weather-beaten laminated signs that hang at the Lorelei for months and advertise the event. Each comes with appropriate twine lashing that were used to hang them to their designated palm tree - in true Wharram beam-lashing tradition. These are often used to decorate a Captain’s cabin and can also be used as place mats or puppy pooper scoopers or bottom scrapers. They are our most cherished awards (OK, a little over hype here!).

Tiki 38 at Hui Wharram
Gary Fern Photo of Tiki 38 at 2014 Hui Wharram

The categories and winners of this year’s awards are (last names are deleted to protect the innocent):

  • Worst Slog to Get Here – Greg and Barbara – Pahi 31 (8 Days to Windward)
  • Embarrassment Award – “My Boat Will Absolutely Be Ready and There This Year” – Thom – Tiki 31
  • Greatest Distance Traveled from Home Port to Get To The Hui – Zui – Shanghi, China
  • Best Small New Build – Omar and Marge – Hitia 17
  • Best Large New Build – Brenden and Alesia – Tiki 38
  • Best New Buy – Brandon – Tangaroa 36 (He bought my Tangaroa! And I got a Tiki 21.)
  • Our Inspirational Leader, Oldest Active Wharramite at 88, and Best (Only?) Polynesian Female Dancer Hand Painted Shirt – As always Gene Perry, for without Gene these Hui’s would never have happened! Thank you Gene for keeping us true to our cause and course.

If you wish to be on the email list for announcements about the next Hui Wharram please drop an email to floridawharramrendezvous@hotmail.com and request being put on the list. Fair winds to all!