We the Water

We The Water

A North Carolina Coast Paddling Initiative

Over three years, members of Wrightsville Beach Outrigger Canoe Club (WBOCC) are paddling the entire North Carolina coast to advocate for clean water, empower local communities, bring awareness of contamination, and protect the most vital element of our lives: water.

Our paddlers are preparing to paddle the final leg, from Buxton to Carova, on September 13th and 14th, 2024.

Join us on our journey!  

Proceeds from this event benefit the North Carolina Coastal Federation, which works to empower coastal residents and visitors from all walks of life to protect and restore the water quality and critically important natural habitats of the North Carolina coast.

There are a lot of ways you can support this exciting paddling event, including:

The first leg along the southeastern NC coast kicked off in September 2022 when members of WBOCC paddled an outrigger canoe from Sunset Beach to Ocean, N.C. Roughly 120 miles, this journey told the story of the North Carolina coast – from threats and risks to solutions and triumphs – and how we can all make a difference in protecting and restoring the place we call home. In 2023, paddlers trekked another 118 miles, from Cedar Point to Buxton and are now preparing for the final leg. 

We the Water Story Map

2022 Recap Video

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Thank You to Our Sponsors!

The Coastal Real Estate Group

The Coastal Real Estate Group

Kim Crouch, founder of The Coastal Real Estate Group, is an exceptional real estate broker and passionate advocate for the North Carolina Coastal Federation. Located in Wilmington, NC and committed to preserving the beauty and sustainability of the coastal region, Kim actively supports NC Coast’s mission to protect and restore the coastal environment. Her dedication to the cause sets her apart and underscores her commitment to the community she serves. Known for her unwavering dedication, integrity, and personalized yet professional approach, clients can trust that their real estate transactions not only benefit them, they also contribute to the long-term health of the North Carolina coast.


Primo Hoagies

Primo Hoagies

Originally established in South Philadelphia, our extensive menu features our own multiple award-winning “Specialty Hoagies” made on crispy Italian Bread using only the finest Gourmet Quality Meats and Cheeses. All hoagies are made Fresh to Order and come in three sizes. Our menu also includes a variety of ‘healthy Alternative” Hoagies and Low Carb Wraps, which are lower in fat and/or sodium content. Hoagies Trays and Sampler Platters are available by advance order and are great for parties, client presentations or as a thank you or sympathy gesture. We offer a variety of Italian Specialties and Salads, which may be used as a side dish or as a topping for your favorite Primo Hoagie. Give us a call and one of our friendly staff members will answer any questions and assist you in planning for your specific needs. 

Remember, it’s not JUST a hoagie…it’s a Primo! Visit us at 3710 S. College Rd in Wilmington 


BeUnlimited Yoga

BeUnlimited Yoga

BeUnlimited Yoga is a unique studio. Our mission at BeU is to provide our community with the highest quality yoga experience. Our intention is to create an atmosphere that is inviting for everyone to experience yoga and share our passion for the yogic lifestyle. We offer classes featuring talented instructors, support workshops, teacher trainings and special events created to inspire action on and off the mat. The energy and unique vibe at BeUnlimited is created to build community,  motivate and inspire students to keep growing their practice, and enhance both their physical and mental health.


SeaGreen Natural Cleaning

SeaGreen Natural Cleaning

SeaGreen Natural Cleaning performs residential cleaning services in Surf City and surrounding areas. Their focus is to provide busy homeowners with reliable, professional, and affordable house cleaning services for your home. They pride themselves in their steadfastness, using only “green” cleaning products that are made using sustainable manufacturing practices and with safe, biodegradable ingredients that don’t negatively impact the environment. They ONLY use products that are safe to use around children and pets.

Check them out at seagreennaturalcleaning.com and be sure to read their blog, which is FILLED with fantastic, helpful information!


Aladon® Network

The Aladon® Network is a global network of asset reliability professionals whose members are certified by  Aladon as Practitioners and Facilitators in the delivery of Risk-based equipment reliability methodologies.  Aladon specializes in risk and reliability thoughtware and software and our global network has successfully  and efficiently helped clients apply RCM-based practices in over 100 countries over more than 3 decades.  

For additional information about The Aladon Network, email us at info@aladon.com or visit our website www.aladon.com

Stellar Blu Construction

Stellar Blu Construction

My name is Kimberly Walters and I own and operate Stellar Blu Construction. I started my company in 2006 and I feel fortunate that I get to do something I love, build homes. When I start a home my goal is to make it unique. So, with that objective in mind, I take the time to make sure the house flows with ease from one room to the next, and feels spacious and open. That space is used wisely and not wasted. That trim features, lighting and the interior finishes are special to the house and the overall design is warm and inviting.

One of the things that sets me apart from others in the industry is that I am personally on the jobsite every day, involved in every phase of the project, from start to finish. I meet with clients to learn about their lifestyle, needs and wishes for their new home and then ensure everything is executed smoothly. I believe a house is not simply a place to live, but a place for a family to create a lifetime of memories. Each home is built with style and functionality in mind. Clients are given personalized attention from the start of design, throughout the building process, until you move in and beyond. Stellar Blu Construction is committed to building quality homes and providing outstanding customer service.


Zulu Marine Services

Zulu Marine Services

Using the latest technology and equipment, Zulu Marine Services provides a wide range of services, including disaster response, environmental remediation, and aerial inspections using a variety of videography and still image options.

Their tools, skills and experience are beneficial across a broad range of possible events and situations, from storm clean-up to chemical spills, from infrastructure inspection to worksite monitoring, they have you covered.

Learn more at zuludiscovery.com

Paddling Gallery

Our Story

When Donna Kahakui, a world-renowned Hawaiian paddler, traveled from Hawaii to Wrightsville Beach, she came not only to teach the folks at the Wrightsville Beach Outrigger Canoe Club about paddling but to share her love for the ocean and how paddling is the way in which she advocates to protect it. From a simple suggestion during a waterway cleanup came the spark that would ignite the club’s own desire and determination to bring awareness, through paddling, to North Carolina’s coastal issues.

While in North Carolina, Kahakui imparted unto us the wisdom and beauty that permeates through Hawaiian culture, specifically teaching us about the word kakou. In Hawaii, kakou means “we,”  in which three or more people are inclusively addressed, and is used to reference all as part of a community. It is our hope that this community mindset prevails when addressing coastal issues – we are, after all, all in the same boat.

Donna Kahiwaokawailani Kahakui
Donna Kahiwaokawailani Kahakui

“I don’t care if you know my name. I don’t care if you know my organization. I care if you know my message,” she insists.

Donna Kahiwaokawailani Kahakui is from Honolulu, Hawaii, and grew up on the Hawaiian Homestead lands of Papakolea. By the time she was 17 years old, she had won her first Molokai to Oahu championship in a 6-person canoe and since then has won numerous team and individual paddling titles in California, Aotearoa, Australia, Fiji, and Tahiti. 

But it is really her love for the ocean that inspires her. When people have asked her where she is from, she’s stated, “I come from the ocean.” Being of Hawaiian ancestry, Donna understands that it is her kuleana (responsibility) to take care of and give back to the ocean. Kahiwaokawailani, the Hawaiian name given to her, means the Chosen One of the Heavenly Waters.  She has learned over the decades and through her extensive time on and in the ocean that her name is her destiny, her path.

In 1997, Donna began planning solo paddles as missions to raise awareness and educate people about the direct relationship they have with the ocean that surrounds them. Her first journey was in 1998, a 78-mile paddle between the islands of Oahu and Maui. Since then she has paddled throughout the Hawaiian Islands, including circumnavigating Oahu, paddling 140 miles between Oahu and Hawaii Island, and 180 miles between Oahu and Niihau.

Donna is the founder of Kai Makana, a nonprofit organization that has sponsored community service projects, beach cleanups, and a youth mentorship program that has taken students to Tahiti, Aotearoa, and Rapa Nui. She has also recently retired as a federal agent for the Environmental Protection Agency.

She continues to devote her life to protecting the ocean and perpetuating its health and well-being, much in the same way that the ocean has done for her. Kahakui has said, ““When you spend so much time on the ocean, you become it. You can feel every current, every drag. Your senses become in tune five million times over. I can never repay the ocean for all the things it has given to me, for it has made me who I am.”

Wrightsville Beach Outrigger Canoe Club

In 2016, after Reggie Barnes brought two Bradley Lightning Canoes to Wrightsville Beach, a small group of paddlers and water enthusiasts got together to form the Wrightsville Beach Outrigger Canoe Club. As the first outrigger club in North Carolina, we have relied on local knowledge and outrigger experiences from Hawaii and California to shape and share our unique club as one paddling ohana (family). For more information – or to join us for a paddle – please visit our website below.

For information or questions concerning the paddle contact Kerri Allen at kerria@nccoast.org.