Lagoona Kahuna cleanup at Agua Hedionda

The Lagoona Kahuna cleanup contest at the Agua Hedionda Lagoon kicks off April 30 for local businesses and community organizations

The Lagoona Kahuna Team Challenge, a lagoon cleanup effort and fundraiser for the Agua Hedionda Lagoon Foundation, kicks off April 30 and runs on Fridays through May 21.

(Photo by Brett Morey)


This year’s Lagoona Kahuna Team Challenge, a lagoon cleanup effort that raises money for the Agua Hedionda Lagoon Foundation’s educational programs, will run over four Fridays, April 30 through May 21.

The event is geared to local businesses, big or small, and community organizations. Teams head out on the Agua Hedionda Lagoon in kayaks or on paddle boards and collect as much debris as they can. Participants can also walk along the shoreline and clean up there. Highlights include team-building timed challenges, games and water relays.

The winner of the Lagoona Kahuna contest is the team with the most points, which is determined by the amount of trash collected, weeds and invasive species removed and participation in the scavenger hunt or trivia game. Pizza and beer will be served by Pizza Port, the food sponsor.

The winning team gets the “Big Kahuna” paddle to display at their office for the next year. At last year’s event, participants removed nearly 37 bags of debris and 26 bags of invasive species and weeds.


Teams can choose a time slot at 9 a.m. to noon or noon to 3 p.m. and meet at California Watersports, 4215 Harrison St., the venue sponsor. The event occurs over several Fridays to spread out the teams and allow social distancing.


There is a virtual option in this year’s event where participants can build a virtual team and clean debris from their own location and compete in timed trivia games via Zoom.


The winner will be announced at a Zoom award ceremony from 4 to 5 p.m. May 25.

Event proceeds benefit the foundation’s environmental educational program serving 13 area school districts across virtual and in-person settings. The event also supports The Discovery Center, a teaching hub where 25,000 visitors typically interact each year. Last year much of the interaction was virtual or outdoors.


Registration cost ranges from $405 for five participants to $1,600 for 25 participants.

Register at aguahedionda.org/lagoona-kahuna-team-challenge or email lisa@aguahedionda.org.

Original story: sandiegouniontribune.com

By LINDA MCINTOSH