UPCOUNTRY - What's way better than soaring down Haleakala high above the maddening crowds on a zipline adventure of a lifetime?
Ziplining for a cause is far more fulfilling.
Skyline Eco Adventures is partnering with Plant A Wish for the first annual "Zip for the Trees."
Take the exciting Haleakala Skyline Tour to benefit Hawaiian Canoe Club’s Kamali‘i Program on Nov. 2, The Nature Conservancy on Nov. 3 and Maui Cultural Lands on Nov. 4.
It's a week-long event to be held in conjunction with the first annual Native Tree Plant Out from Oct. 30 through Nov. 5.
Skyline has an affordable, doable offer that can't be refused: $50 per person on the 3 and 3:30 p.m. tours at the Haleakala course located on Crater Road.
The Haleakala Skyline Tour combines five picturesque zipline crossings and an Indiana Jones-style swinging bridge experience through a towering forest in Upcountry Maui.
The excursion is an educational encounter as well.
Learn about Hawaii's environmental riches and Maui's long ranching history as you fly through the trees on this one-of-a-kind adventure.
Remarkably, 100 percent of the proceeds go to the listed charity of choice, as follows: Sunday, Oct. 30, Hui Malama Learning Center; Monday, Oct. 31, East Maui Watershed Partnership; Tuesday, Nov. 1, Hawaiian Islands Land Trust; Wednesday, Nov. 2, Hawaiian Canoe Club's Kamali'i Program; Thursday, Nov. 3, The Nature Conservancy; and, Friday, Nov. 4, Maui Cultural Lands.
On Saturday, the course is open from 8 a.m. until noon, with 100 percent donated on an equal-shared basis to all of the worthy participating community non-profits.
With a heart for the young people of the island, Skyline will be escorting Maui youth groups on Saturday from 12:30 to 3:30 p.m. free-of-charge, including Hui Malama Learning Center, Boy Scouts, Aloha House and Hawaiian Canoe Club's Kamali'i program.
In addition to ziplining, and in celebration of Arbor Day, Skyline and Plant A Wish will plant Native Hawaiian trees on the grounds of the Haleakala course on Saturday, educating the volunteers about Hawaii's unique history and culture while making significant contributions to environmental and cultural preservation.
The Monday through Friday afternoon and Saturday morning adventures are open to the public on a first-come, first-served basis. Call 878-8400 for reservations.
Skyline General Manager Eric McLellan is excited about the positive partnerships.
"We are looking forward to having our fundraising days next week. It should be a great opportunity for friends, family and others to make a donation to Maui Cultural Lands in a fun way," he said.
Ekolu Lindsey is the president of Maui Cultural Lands (www.mauiculturallands.com), one of Skyline's benefactors.
"Skyline Eco-Adventures understands the true meaning of kokua - to give without the expectations of receiving something in return. They have consistently supported the Maui Cultural Lands' mission to stabilize, protect and restore Hawaiian Cultural Resources," Lindsey said.
"We need to support green businesses like Skyline Eco-Adventures, for they are investing monies back to local organizations with the intent of leaving our community/world a better place to live for future generations," he continued.
"Their generous donation to MCL will help us to continue to spread seeds of malama (take care of properly) and aloha (deep love and compassion) to our local people, students and visitors."
MCL main projects include Honokowai Valley and Kaheawa Wind Farms.
"To the uninitiated, we look like a bunch of people doing yard work in a valley that's not even ours... but to the people working, we are discovering the secrets left behind by our ancestors. Putting our mana (life force) into the land that was once cultivated by our ancestors brings a special feeling of peace, serenity and connectivity that is difficult to explain on paper. One must truly live it in order to understand the many lessons left behind," Lindsey commented.
He is thankful and extends this invitation: "All volunteers of like minds and like hearts are welcome to join us in this voyage of discovery."