Hawaii Calendar: April 2012

A look ahead to the happenings of the Hawaiian Islands By: Marty Wentzel
Maui’s Celebration of the Arts is a hands-on culture and arts festival. // © 2012 The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua
Maui’s Celebration of the Arts is a hands-on culture and arts festival. // © 2012 The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua

Spotlight: Maui
April 6-8: Celebration of the Arts. Held during Easter weekend, this hands-on arts and culture festival invites clients of all ages to interact with Hawaii artists, dancers, musicians and filmmakers during panel discussions, workshops and concerts. It’s a unique opportunity to experience the authenticity of Hawaii’s heart and soul. Highlights include a luau and evening concert. The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua. (808-669-6200; www.celebrationofthearts.org).

Hawaii Island
April 8-14: Merrie Monarch Festival. Hawaii’s most prestigious hula competition features group contests in ancient and modern dances and a solo Miss Aloha Hula competition. Tickets to the stadium stage performances are hard to come by, but there are plenty of related events, including an outdoor party on Coconut Island and a parade through town. Edith Kanakaole Stadium, Hilo. (808-935-9168; www.merriemonarch.com)

April 21: Earth and Ocean Festival. This community-based program features family-friendly exhibits and activities that showcase environmental and recycling programs, coastal restoration, energy conservation and cultural activities, with live music and entertainment. Outrigger Keauhou Beach Resort. (808-329-1758; www.kona-kohala.com)

April 28: Keauhou Farmers’ Market. This Saturday morning tradition assembles buyers and sellers of quality fruits, vegetables, flowers, coffee, macadamia nuts and other island products. Live music serenades the attendees. (808-324-6011, www.keauhoufarmersmarket.com)

April 16: Waimea Historic Walking Tour.
Clients can take a two-hour journey back in time in one of Hawaii’s most historic towns. Guides discuss how the agricultural landscape changed from taro to rice to corn, and they share details about the last king of Kauai and other famous citizens of Waimea. West Kauai Visitor Center. (808-338-1332; www.wkbpa.org)

April 21: Kauai World Challenge. Now in its 10th year, this event offers incredible views of one of Hawaii’s most beloved sports — outrigger canoe paddling. The 34-mile coastal relay race draws athletes from across the island chain as well as the mainland U.S., Australia, Tahiti and Canada. They start at Wailua Beach Park and finish at Salt Pond Beach Park. (808-635-3053; www.kauaiworldchallenge.org)

April 21: East Maui Taro Festival. For 20 years, Hana has dedicated one weekend annually to Hawaii’s most cherished agricultural product, known for its edible root and large leaves. Clients learn about the historical significance of taro while enjoying hula, music, food, arts, crafts and a taro-pancake breakfast. Hana Ballpark, Hana. (808-264-1553; www.tarofestival.org)

April 22: Steel Guitar Festival. Honoring one of Hawaii’s living legends of Hawaiian music, Henry Kaleialoha Allen, this festival features well-known steel guitar players from around the world plus Hawaiian culture specialists. Allen and other legendary players perform and participate in free classes and presentations. Kaanapali Beach Hotel. (808-283-3576; www.aecg.org)

April 1: Kuhio Beach Torchlighting Show. Nightly, except for Mondays, this free outdoor event opens with a torchlighting ceremony and the blowing of a conch shell. Next, visitors are treated to Hawaiian music and hula by the sea. Festivities begin at sunset. Look for it near the Duke Kahanamoku statue in Waikiki. (808-843-8002; www.gohawaii.com)

April 1-15: Hawaii Woodshow. Juried by a panel of artists and design professionals, this 20th annual show features heirloom-quality pieces by woodworkers from around the islands. Made from native koa and dozens of other island-grown hardwoods, their art and furniture are for sale throughout the show. Honolulu Academy of Arts. (808-221-5171; woodshow.hawaiiforest.org)

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