Categorized | Featured, Sports

Web site spotlights Kona’s adaptive sports

( photo courtesy of Bob Brown/

Kona resident Rosemary Ekert and her “Surf Lessons” beach boys get their feet wet in Kailua Bay. (Photo courtesy of Bob Brown/

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Not too long ago paddling, surfing and other water activities were not viable options for people with physical disabilities. Sand and lava can be discouraging barriers to the enjoyment of the Kona beaches and warm Pacific waters.

Disabled Adventures Hawaii, along with the efforts of community groups, is now making sports, activities and Kona village more accessible to both local residents and visitors.

The Disabled Adventures Hawaii Web site is the creation of Jean Hartley, a long-term Kona resident and polio survivor. The site profiles selected West Hawaii businesses that assure safe and accessible land and water adaptive sports.

The free online service offers information on Big Island transportation and goods related to the needs of people with disabilities.

The “Alii Stroll” map invites visitors to explore the downtown area by using sidewalk paths that are flat and safe. The map also pinpoints 42 “handicapped parking” spaces along the 0.7 mile ocean front route. Without this reserved parking, the ocean, shops, restaurants and historic sites are inaccessible to many.

“The Web site lets people see how Kona town is moving toward being an accessible community to the physically disabled,” Hartley said.

— Find out more:
Jean Hartley: 769-4489,
Disabled Adventures Hawaii: www.disabledadventureshawaii.c…

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