The Malia remains the best known and possibly the most significant of all Hawaiian racing outrigger canoes. Don't be deceived by the name, meaning "Calm Water", as it is derived from the location from which its creator lived and worked, on the Kona Coast of the Big Island of Hawaii - well known for its calm seas being on the lee side of the island. The Malia as you can see from its historical chronology below, played a major role in many facets of the development of the sport, ultimately becoming the plug for a mold to made in California, Hawaii and Australia.
1933 - The Malia was first felled and hewn on the Big Island of Hawaii (Kailua-Kona), shaped by James Takeo-Yamasaki from Blonde Koa wood.
1940 - The Malia was sold to Dad Center of Outrigger Canoe Club on a trip made to the Big Island to purchase 3 canoes at $200 each.
1948 - The Malia was sold to the newly formed Waikiki Surf Club.
1950 - Wally Froiseth, George Downing and Rudy Choy made alterations to the bow.
1952-54 - Malia won 14 straight Senior Men’s races.
1953, 58-63 - Malia won Moloka'i races.
1959 - Malia won the inaugural Catalina Island race.
1959 - Tom Johnson and Noah Kalama made a fiberglass mold of the Malia.
1960 - The first fiberglass Malia competed in the Moloka'i race. The canoe was named “Kawelea” and was from Newport Beach, California.
1961 - The Malia won the Moloka'i after flipping three times.
1960-78 - Malia fiberglass canoes participated in their own division in the Moloka'i races.
1966, 69,70, 72, 73 - A Malia fiberglass canoe wins the Moloka'i.
1973 - The Malia retraces the voyage of King Kamehameha of 250 miles.
1978 - The first Californian winning crew of the Moloka'i win using a fiberglass Malia.
1980 - A Malia division was founded by the Kalifornia Outrigger Association.
1981 - A Malia mold is made in Australia with Malia canoes having been distributed also to Japan, Samoa, Britain, Canada, Illinois, Louisiana, Florida and New York.
Note: Today the Malia is retired from competition and believed to be owned by Waikiki Surf Club, who purchased the canoe in 1948 from George "Dad" Center of Outrigger Canoe Club.