Our History

allenCoach Allen started paddling in the mid 1960’s with the Leeward Kai Canoe Club, founded by Henry and Edith Van Gieson. The club consisted of many families, specifically the Pachecos, Mahoes, Lasconias, Lizares, Nahaleas, Hanohanos, Abads, Rapozas, and many more. Leeward Kai Canoe Club was a family oriented club where all members came together to paddle and help the club.In 1968, Coach Allen left Hawaii to serve in the Navy.  After serving four years in the Navy, Coach Allen moved to San Diego in 1972.  It was in San Diego that he met Jim Ako and other local people from Hawaii.

In 1976, San Diego’s first canoe club was established.  It started as a recreational club, allowing locals to enjoy what they missed from back home.  This later became Kai Elua Outrigger Canoe Club.  In 1982 Coach Allen became a part of the Budweiser Outrigger Team in San Diego.

thankyou-1After moving to Arizona, Coach Allen founded Team Arizona (TAZ) Outrigger Canoe Club in 2004.  After a two year battle with pancreatic cancer, Coach Allen passed away in 2009.

Team Arizona proudly paddles in loving memory of Coach Allen, and strives to honor him each and every time we are in the canoe together.