Back to All Events

Buy Back the Beach

  • Old Lahaina Luau 1251 Front Street Lahaina, HI, 96761 United States (map)


The 19th annual Buy Back The Beach will bring together Maui’s most passionate conservationists for an island-style paina under the stars at the famous Old Lahaina Luau. Guests will be treated to ono luau fare provided by the talented chefs of Na Hoaloha Ekolu, complimentary cocktails, live and silent auctions and live entertainment by Ahumanu!

Maria Lehua Apisaloma, Kekai Robinson and Liz Morales of Ahumanu

Maria Lehua Apisaloma, Kekai Robinson and Liz Morales of Ahumanu

This event provides vital operational support for Hawaiian Islands Land Trust’s efforts to protect coastal lands, historical and cultural landscapes, and working farms and ranches across Hawaii.

If you cannot attend but would like to make a tax-deductible donation to the Hawaiian Islands Land Trust to ensure the ongoing conservation of the lands that sustain us, please click here.
Table Sponsorship and Tickets:
$10,000 premium- seats 8 $7,500 premium table – seats 8
$5,000 premium table – seats 8
$2,500 table – seats 8
$1,600 table - seats 8 Individual Tickets  $200 each

List of sponsor benefits

Our supporters have enabled HILT to deliver an incredible amount of conservation successes over the years. Your support for the 2020 Buy Back the Beach: Mālama Kīpuka benefit, will enable us to deliver even more vital conservation successes in the coming year.

2020 Champion of the Land

Bob Hobdy by Bryan Berkowtiz.jpg


Hawaiian Islands Land Trust will honor Robert “Bob” Hobdy as HILT’s 2020 Champion of the Land at Buy Back the Beach: Malama Kipuka, an annual fundraising gala to be held at Old Lahaina Luau on Saturday, January 25, 2020. Each year, HILT selects a person, group, or organization that has made a substantial impact in conservation and sustainability in Hawaii.

Hobdy has demonstrated a long-standing commitment to Hawaii’s environment and sustainability. He was exposed to botany at the young age of 15 when he developed a keen interest in plants. He went on to obtain an undergraduate degree in forestry at Oregon State University. He began his 37 ½ year career with the Department of Land and Natural Resources, Division of Forestry & Wildlife on Kauai where he quickly distinguished himself as a botanist who prioritized Hawaii’s native plants and habitats. His work allowed him to focus on native plants and endangered species and their ecosystems, as well as watershed management and invasive species management. Hobdy has made extensive contributions to our understanding of native plants over the years. He worked closely with Bishop Museum, contributing to their collections which serve as a resource for researchers all over the world. Hobdy also discovered 12 new species of native plants, two of which he described in scientific publications and five of which were named after Hobdy by other botanists.

“We are ecstatic to honor Bob Hobdy for his tremendous contribution to Hawaii, its environment and communities” said Laura Kaakua, HILT’s CEO. “Hawaii is indebted to Bob, and people like him, who go above and beyond to protect what is so unique to Hawaii and dedicate their lives to ensuring its protection.”

Throughout his career, Hobdy has held various positions within the Department of Land and Natural Resources, Division of Forestry & Wildlife before retiring as District Manager of Maui County. He is currently an environmental consultant specializing and flora and fauna surveys, wetland surveys, and site evaluations. Hobdy serves as a volunteer on a variety of boards including the Maui County Arborist Advisory Committee and the Maui Nui Botanical Gardens. He is on the Federal Weed Risk Assessment advisory committee and the Maui Invasive Species Committee since 1991. He also serves on HILT’s Advisory Board.

“Hawaii’s native plants and ecosystems have a number of champions, but they need more” says Hobdy. “Organizations such as HILT play an absolutely vital role in protecting Hawaii’s valuable natural and cultural resources. What’s more, they are essential to maintaining people’s connection to land – it’s that connection that ensures future generations’ understanding of, and pride in, our environment and heritage.  It is what helps make Hawaii so very special.” notes Hobdy.

Previous Champion of the Land Honorees:

2010: The Erdman Family/ Ulupalakua Ranch 2011: John and Maile Bay/ Pacific Islands Land Institute (PILI) 2012: Helen Nielsen 2013: Dale Bonar 2014: Michael Moore/Na Hoaloha Ekolu 2015: William S. Merwin 2016: Gaylord and Carol Wilcox 2017: Senator Brian Schatz 2018: Henk Rogers/Blue Planet 2019: Susan & Jac Kean





To find out more please email


Earlier Event: December 19
Kauai Island Paina