The twin Rivers give surf lessons to the stars

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PAIA, Hawaii -- Part of the allure of surfing in Hawaii is all the things that come with the sport: the sun-bleached hair; the beautiful people who gravitate toward the activity; even the shiny, tight shirts that surfers favor.

Now, visitors to Maui can experience all these things and learn to stand on a surfboard, as well.

Twin brothers Kiva and Tide Rivers own Rivers 2 the Sea, a start-to-finish surf operation that picks up guests at their resort, brings them to a local, uncrowded beach, walks them through a land lesson, then takes them out to the breaking crests.

Well take most people out to spots that have gentle rollers, said Tide. You can even stand up in most of the spots, which puts peoples minds at ease.

Were all here to have a good time outdoors, not push people into waves that are too big for them. Its about having a good time and challenging yourself just a little bit.

The outfit is based in Paia, a lesser-known artists and windsurfers town at the base of Mauis Haleakala volcano.

The brothers have earned a reputation around the island for offering private lessons to individuals or small groups. And, according to their Web site, CNN has called the Rivers brothers surf instructors to the stars.

This summer, Scrubs and Garden State star Zach Braff spent an afternoon surfing with the Rivers brothers. Adrien Brody (Academy Award winner for The Pianist) and Kelly Hu, costar of X-Men 2, also have taken lessons from Rivers 2 the Sea.

The Rivers brothers have been surfing for almost their entire lives. Their father, Barry Rivers, founder with his wife, Stella, of the Maui Film Festival, said the boys were surfing before they could speak in complete sentences.

Kiva and Tide Rivers serve as the festivals private VIP surf instructors for entertainment A-listers and captains of industry, according to their Web site.

At press time, Kiva Rivers was participating in a longboard contest in Waikiki in which he took second place, overall. Tide is completing a business degree.

Both see these tasks as ways to grow their business. While Tide is learning the business end of the trade, Kiva is amassing publicity through the competition circuit.

The brothers charge $150 for two hours of private lessons. Groups (no more than four people) pay $75 per person for two hours. For more information about the surf school, call (808) 280-8795 or visit www.riverstothesea.com.

To contact reporter Brian Berusch, send e-mail to [email protected].

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