The Kipimana Cup is a goodwill football game between the public and private schools located within a few miles radius.
“We look forward with the two schools and the community to this game every year,” said Bill Walter, president of W.H. Shipman, Limited. “I am always pleasantly surprised by the goodwill shown by both teams. The coaches and staff have made this more than simply a game but also a time to celebrate Kea’au as a great place to live, work and be educated.”
Kamehameha Schools and Kea’au High School didn’t play against each other, being in different divisions — Kea’au being in Division 1 and Kamehameha being in Division 2. The Big Island Interseholastic Federation League ultimately changed that, but not before W.H. Shipman, Ltd. first pitched the annual Kipimana Cup five years ago.
Kipimana is how Hawaiians referred to Shipman more than 100 years ago, and both Kea’au and Kamehamhea Schools are located on land formerly owned by Shipman.
W.H. Shipman provides $500 to each of the school’s booster clubs following the game, and a trophy to the winning team.
Kamehameha Schools has won all four of the previous Kipimana Cups, but not without a fight. “They always play us very tough,” said Dan Lyons, head football and aquatics coach at Kamehameha.
“The Kipimana Cup is a great way to showcase the Kea’au and Puna areas of the island of Hawaii as well as the graciousness of W.H. Shipman,” said Dan Lyons, the head football and aquatics coach at Kamehameha Schools.
Both he and Dean Cevallos, principal at Kea’au High School, emphasized that the Kipimana Cup is meant to be friendly competition amongst the neighboring schools.
“It’s an expression of Shipman’s commitment to high school athletics and the two school’s athletics,” noted Lyons. “We always need good competition, and something we look forward to…”
“It’s neat to see a corporation that reaches out to the athletic community and supports us,” said Lyons.
“Personally I think cup is neat,” Cevallos said. “It will stay within the Kea’au community and it is supported by a corporate sponsor.”
“Bill is supportive of everything in community and anything that builds Kea’au as a community, and this football game is part of building Kea’au pride,” Cevallos said. “It’s not about cheering for Kamehameha or Kea’au or BIIF, it’s about supporting the cup.”
Kamehameha School’s Hawai‘i campus opened on former W.H. Shipman land in 2001 and has an enrollment of a little over 1,000 students, grades K-12, while Kea‘au High School has an enrollment of 880 children, grades 9-12. The school first opened in 1998, also on Shipman property.
W.H. Shipman, for 130 years, has had approximately 17,000 acres in the Puna District, and is active in agriculture and commercial/ industrial development and leasing. Shipman holds a long-range view toward sustainability and planned development for balanced community use.
Saturday’s game will be held at Kamehameha Schools. Kickoff for the varsity game is expected to start at 7 p.m., a half hour after the 5 p.m. junior varsity game ends. Expect to pay a nominal admission.
Contact Walter at 966-9325 for more details.
— Tiffany Edwards Hunt