Baldwin Beach, Maui May 20th, 2012.
The Butterfly Effect illuminated the north shore of Maui on Saturday, May 19, 2012 as hundreds of glowing, exuberant women gathered to participate in two beach cleanups, yoga, and an epically fun noncompetitive standup paddle journey on the deep blue sea. Early in the morning, two hundred women of all skill levels gathered from around the world at Baldwin Beach. They were greeted with huge bright yellow butterfly flags, handmade lei’s, gift bags, and snacks. All of Paia could feel the tingles of joy in the air as the infectious energy of sisterhood emanated a buzz of camaraderie, enthusiasm, smiles, and supportive encouragement. The women gathered for a group meditation and yoga session on the beach, where a helicopter dropped thousands of flower “butterflies” onto them, after which they eagerly grabbed their boards and dove into the ocean like a flock of mermaids. From there they completed a downwinder from Baldwin to Kanaha on stand up paddle boards, accompanied by boats and jet ski guardians.
The intention of The Butterfly Effect event is to create an environment where women come together to support each other, nurture the environment, have fun, release competition, and bond via a mutual love of the ocean and respect for nature. It also aims to build community support and awareness of the athletes who grace Maui’s shore daily. The ending ceremony was a grand, jam packed event that was held at Thee Salon, where hundreds of guests were greeted with aerial silk performances, live music, delicious food, and a breathtaking fashion show featuring Maui’s most gorgeous women modeling clothing from top local companies and designers.
The Butterfly Effect was born in 2007 by Hawaii’s beloved water woman, Tatiana Howard, a professional water sports athlete, and a pillar in the community. She wanted to take the competitive edge out of water sports, and create an environment where she and her sisters could share their mutual passion for the ocean, come together in sisterhood, and help keep their beloved beaches clean. After sharing her vision with friends, The Butterfly Effect began to take flight. Since then she has produced 23 events around the world in 10 different countries. Inspired and driven, she quickly stepped into the role of an organizational visionary powerhouse: gathering donations, permits, sponsors, participants and visioning a full day, elegantly crafted affair that captured the hearts of all attendees. Collaborating with like-minded water women and international friends, her once small idea has now turned into a worldwide movement promoting women’s empowerment in sports, health, dreams, visions, and environmental activism.
Fundraising efforts associated with the Butterfly Effect benefited Surfrider Foundation, Maui Chapter. It is a US 501c3 nonprofit and their mission is the protection and enjoyment of oceans, waves and beaches through a powerful activist network. The community participated in the beach clean-up and at the silent auction fundraiser.
The Butterfly Effect World Tour will head to Cabarete, Dominican Republic on July 28 th, 2012. The event day will consist of international women who windsurf, kitesurf, kayak, and stand up paddle. Fundraising efforts will proceed the DREAM project.