Travel Blog: Gophers in Honolulu

Go Gophers! The imu ceremony: taking the roasted pig out of the underground oven
Go Gophers!
The imu ceremony: taking the roasted pig out of the underground oven
Go Gophers!

Follow the Gophers on and off the court at the Waikiki Beach Marriott Resort Rainbow Wahine Showdown. Minnesota will play games against Chattanooga (Fri. at 6:30 p.m. CT), Colorado State (Sat. at 4:00 p.m CT) and Hawaii (Sun. at 9:00 p.m CT). The Chattanooga and Hawaii games can be heard on the radio on 1500 ESPN, with the Colorado State game on KBEM 88.5.

Photo Gallery

Thursday, Nov. 28 - 5:48 a.m. HT/9:48 a.m. CT

The Gophers traveled Wednesday to Honolulu, Hawaii, to play some basketball in paradise. We may have spent most of the day on planes and at airports, but we "gained" four hours flying across time zones, and the temperatures in the 80s were a welcome feeling upon arrival!

The team received leis and some Hawaiian snacks at the airport. Our hotel, which has an open air lobby to take advantage of the warm weather, is right by the famous Waikiki Beach. It's a busy area with a lot to do and plenty of nice scenery.

The team had dinner at an Italian restaurant and had a little free time to explore the area. Today, "business trip" mode begins, with watching film and practicing later this morning.

That's not to say we can't have any fun, though. On this Thanksgiving Day, we have a very Hawaiian dinner experience planned. (Stay tuned for more on this later.) We are thankful for the opportunity to visit and play basketball in this beautiful place. We hope everyone has a great day!

Thursday, Nov. 28 - 4:00 p.m. HT/8:00 p.m CT

Soon after breakfast at the hotel, which included all the delicious pineapple you could eat, the team hopped on the bus to practice at the University of Hawaii. The practice gym we used had a lot of natural light, because parts of the roof were made of glass.

The Gophers put in some hard work and then went back to the hotel and got ready for lunch. Like yesterday's dinner, our lunch was outdoors. The weather was great, but we also had to fend off some pigeons who wanted our food.

Right now is the last hour of free time before we meet for Thanksgiving festivities. The Gophers have been out exploring the area, including the beach and the large amount of shops near the hotel.

Check the photo gallery for a few new pictures, and watch the video above (made by video coordinator Jess Lemanski) to see what the Gophers are thankful for.

Friday, Nov. 29 - 4:51 a.m. HT/8:51 a.m. CT

For Thanksgiving last night, the team and staff went to Germaine's Luau on the southwest coast of Oahu. I won't say too much about it yet, because we might have a guest blogger to do that later today. There are a few new photos in the gallery, though. Hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving!

Saturday, Nov. 30 - 10:50 a.m. HT/2:50 p.m. CT

The Gophers won their first game in a 63-62 nailbiter yesterday. (You can read the recap here.) This morning, Sari Noga was able to take some time to write a blog post about the trip so far. Take it away, Sari:

Aloha Gopher Fans!

I hope everyone has had a wonderful Thanksgiving as I know we have here in Hawaii. There are so many things to be thankful for during this time of year and I am so blessed to be on this trip with my Gopher family.

Being that this is my first time to Hawaii there were so many "firsts" I have been able to experience and fun traditions that they have, including one in which we were greeted by Gopher volleyball player Kalei Mau's family at the airport with leis and authentic Hawaiian food. They are so friendly and love the University of Minnesota!

On Thanksgiving Day we had the opportunity to have some free time to explore and take pictures on Waikiki Beach and go to the International Market Place where they sell handmade Hawaiian products.

What has been a highlight of the excitement is our Thanksgiving dinner. We had the chance to experience a Hawaiian luau. A luau is a Hawaiian tradition in which they roast a kalua pig and provide entertainment of hula dancing and specialty Samoan fire performance. One of the best parts was when our freshmen had the opportunity to go up on stage and learn how to hula dance. It was quite entertaining to see how each had their own interpretation and twist to the dance.

Overall the trip has been awesome, but all in all we are here to win! We plan on coming back to frigid Minnesota with three more victories!

A hui kaua (Until we meet again),

Sari Noga

Sunday, Dec. 1 - 1:57 HT/5:57 CT

The Gophers won again yesterday, and have one more game left at 9 p.m. CT today. Our stay in Hawaii is coming to a close. The weather has been rainy and windy today, but overall it has been good.

We will head to the airport following tonight's game. It's going to be a long journey back, as we are scheduled to arrive on campus around 2:45 p.m. Monday, but it has been worth it! Thanks to everyone for following along, and a special thanks to the fans who traveled to cheer on the team. It has been fun hearing you in the stands during games.

Keep an eye out for more video when we get back.