Big Kahuna event graphic

Big Kahuna - Kayak Race

Mission: Big Kahuna is a fundraising event for SportsAbility Alliance to support inclusive and accessible recreation and wellness programs for people of all ages and abilities.



New race format for 2021

2 Races | Many ways to participate

Instead of teams of people in a big canoe, single paddlers in kayaks will compete for the best time. All racers will be video recorded, which will be streamed at a later date. Winners will be announced on the video stream.

There will be 2 categories of races: 

  • Big Kahuna ("Big Chief") race - for organizations and groups
  • Big Kāpena ("Big Captain") race - for individuals

Big Kahuna Race

Groups and organizations can raise $500 as a team to sponsor a "champion" (a single paddler) to race on their behalf. This can be someone chosen by the group or we can find someone for you. 

Group/Organization names will be announced as part of the race video. The winning organization/group will be crowned the Big Kahuna.

Big Kāpena Race

Individuals who want to participate, unaffiliated with a group or organization, can donate $50 to enter the race. The winning individual will be crowned the Big Kāpena.

NOTE: Both Big Kahuna and Big Kāpena racers can race in honor of someone, just indicate it on your sign up form.

Ways to Participate

  • Help a group or organization raise the sponsorship funds
  • Volunteer as a champion for a group
  • Enter the Big Kāpena race as an individual
  • Make a donation without entering a race
  • Share this event with friends and family to help us spread awareness

Our goal is that this new format helps keep participants and staff safe while encouraging more people to participate, even beyond the Tallahassee area (either in sponsoring a racer or driving to Tallahassee to race themselves).

Join the fun and support a good cause!

Sign up as a team or individual

Payment will be required to complete your registration.
We encourage you to also be ready to choose a time slot for your race (every fifteen minutes 2 PM - 4 PM on Oct 3).


Just want to make a donation?

Click the button below to make a donation without being entered in a race.

Frequently Asked Questions  |  Resources to promote your team

Event Flyer


Frequently Asked Questions

Race Format

There will be TWO race categories this year:

1) The Big Kahuna – This race is for organizations and groups to challenge each other for the title of Big Kahuna!!

  • This year to keep people safe, each organization/group will choose a team champion (a single paddler) who will race on their behalf.
  • Champions will kayak to a marker on Lake Hall, go around the marker and come back.
  • Each boat will be timed going around the marker on Lake Hall and back.
  • The winner will be the champion with the fastest time.

2) The Big Kāpena – This race is the same format, but is for individuals to compete.

Winner Announcements

Each participant's performance will be video recorded, but their lap times will be kept confidential. The race video will be streamed online at a later date so everyone can see and enjoy the race. The winners (Big Kahuna and Big Kāpena) will be announced as part of the video stream.


The winners will receive the Big Kahuna or Big Kāpena paddle, a display quality, engraved wooden paddle to recognize their achievement. The prize paddle engraved with the winner’s name will be presented to the Big Kahuna and Big Kāpena at a time convenient for them.

Race Time

Each racers (champions and individuals) will sign up in advance for a specific time slot that is convenient for them.
Racers are encouraged to arrive a little early to prepare for their race.


Lake Hall at Alfred B. Maclay Gardens (3540 Thomasville Road, Tallahassee, FL 32309). 
Please sign in at the Registration Desk in the Lake Hall parking lot when you arrive.

Entrance Fee

Park entrance fees have been waived for Big Kahuna participants.


Park in the lot near Lake Hall.


Kayaks, Personal Flotation Devices (PFDs) and paddles will be provided. If you would like to bring your own PFD or paddle, please feel free.


Each team participant must sign a waiver.

Good Sportsmanship

Participants are expected to practice the principles of good sportsmanship at all times. Race officials reserve the right to disqualify any participant or team in extreme circumstances.



Resources to Promote Fundraising

Captions (for social posts or emails)

Feel free to customize for your own use, and be sure to include information on how people can support you.

We are participating in the 2021 Big Kahuna race to support accessible and inclusive recreation for people of all ages and abilities. Help us reach our goal of $500 to cover the kayak sponsorship to enter the race.
You can learn more about this event at
#BigKahuna2021 #ActiveLeisure4Life

Show your support for accessible and inclusive recreation for people of all ages and abilities by donating to our fundraiser! The goal is $500 to cover the kayak sponsorship for the Big Kahuna kayak race. Every little bit helps. 
You can learn more about this event at
#BigKahuna2021 #ActiveLeisure4Life

We are looking for a "champion" to race for our team canoe in the Big Kahuna kayak race. If you are interested please let us know! You can learn more about this event at
#BigKahuna2021 #ActiveLeisure4Life

Images (for social posts, emails, websites, etc.)

You can use these images as they are or use them as a template to make your own custom design using Canva.

View Big Kahuna Square Graphics on Canva  |  Download Graphics (ZIP file)  |  Customize this template on Canva

Kiwanis Club Promotion Graphics (view on Canva)  |  Download Kiwanis Graphics (ZIP file)

Printable Flyers

View Big Kahuna Flyer on Canva  |  Download Flyers  |  Customize this template


Proceeds to assist in providing programming for Florida Disabled Outdoors Association 501(c)(3) Not for Profit 59-3051552