‘UH Football Fan Fest’, Maui Donation Drive Successful as Aloha Spirt Support Shines Through 

BY PAUL BRECHT | HONOLULU
PUBLISHED AUG 14, 2023

MĀNOA — On a day that was supposed to be originally focused on the newest edition of the University of Hawai’i Rainbow Warrior football team, the cloud of tragedy from the recent wildfires tearing through Maui took the main stage.

With a three-hour event planned for fans to enjoy watching the ‘Bows play a scrimmage-like practice against each other with live music, refreshments and an autograph session/meet-and-greet with the ‘Bows on the schedule, an opportunity to capitalize on people gathering in one spot arose.

The football team, with the help of volunteers including former UH athletic director Dave Matlin, collected donations for those impacted by the tragic wildfires in Maui for three hours of ‘Fan Fest’, filling three rooms with supplies to immediately be brought to aid the recovery efforts. 

The recovery in Maui will mirror a marathon far closer than a sprint, as the devastation destroyed homes, history and happiness of people on Maui. If you wish to continue supporting in the recovery and rebuilding efforts, please consider using one of the following causes that have been confirmed to directly benefit the people of Maui.

Additional Maui Resources: 

 

  • Food 
  • Show Aloha for Maui clothing with proceeds going directly to Maui 
  • Maui Strong Fund – rapidly deploying resources for Maui residents 
  • Requests for gas, water, baby needs, pet needs, hygiene, medicine, and other essentials. 
  • Donation Drives on neighbor islands

Over in the T.C. Ching Complex, fans got their first official look at the re-done temporary home field for the ‘Bows football team while the new Aloha Stadium gets built. Along with the new seats to help allow for 15,000 fans to attend games on campus this season for the return of the ‘Run ‘N Gun’, the Aloha Stadium 75-foot video board was moved down to Hawai’i’s campus for the 2023 season to help improve the game day experience. 

Speaking of the “game day experience”, fans got a taste of what they may be able to expect going forward at ‘Bows home games. It has been a stated goal of new UH athletic director Craig Angelos to listen to fan suggestions to improve the experience for fans.

Live music from DJ Wizard played for the length of the event, playing classics for adults to enjoy while mixing in the modern hits that TikTok users make famous weekly. Under each set of bleachers behind the end zones were concessions and refreshments, while a few booths were set up on the sidelines for fans to snag tickets and new apparel. 

Yet, best of all was a back-and-forth display in an intrasquad scrimmage where the ‘Bows defense continued to show signs of being a dynamic unit this year while the offense finally started to get going, allowing for a few Schager Bombs to be aired out and enjoyed by those in attendance. 

The first half was centered around working underneath, as Schager showed an improved processing speed going through reads and getting the ball out quickly to his playmakers. There are the popular names in Tylan Hines and Kansas transfer Steven McBride, who was on the receiving end of one of the deep touchdown passes from the first-team quarterback. Another common trend? The involvement of tight ends in the offense, as Greyson Morgan, Oakie Salave’a and the rest of the room continues to give the signal-callers a security blanket to check down to.

Following the practice, fans could meet up and chat with their favorite Rainbow Warriors and take pictures. It was a hit amongst everyone in attendance, capping off a productive day of work for the team, an enjoyable day for fans and a helpful day in the recovery efforts for the people on Maui.