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The third annual Big Island Jazz and Blues Festival is swinging back to Mauna Kea Beach Hotel from June 6-8.
Hotel manager Phyllis Branco sees the event as a great chance for travelers to experience the heartbeat of Hawaii.
“Music in general is integral to any Hawaii Island vacation,” said Branco. “To be able to experience well-known, award-winning jazz musicians would enhance a vacation anywhere. But to experience them on Hawaii Island, at the legendary Mauna Kea Beach Hotel, creates very special and lasting memories for anyone fortunate enough to be here then.”
The festival begins on Friday, June 6 with a reception at Kaunaoa Bar and Grill, where clients can unwind to live music and chat with the headliners.
Saturday brings the main concert on the North Pointe luau grounds. Guests can boogie to performances by Grammy-winning trumpeter Skip Martin, The Iguanas from New Orleans, saxophone legend Donald Harrison, drummer Jason Marsalis, harmonica player Johnny Sansone, Saturday Night Live band trombonist Steve Turre and local guitarist Benny Uyetake.
The weekend wraps up with a Sunday brunch, where guests can indulge in great food and more live tunes.
“Jazz crosses the boundaries of every generation,” noted Branco. “You can expect to see families, honeymooners, young and old, residents and visitors, all tapping their toes and grooving to the beat.”
Travel agents can encourage their clients to take advantage of a commissionable jazz festival package available from June 4-10. Included are two tickets to the Saturday evening show and room rates beginning at $275 per night.
“Any time there are special events going on, it adds a layer of interest, fun and connection to the local community for our visitors,” said Branco. “We hope guests will enjoy all that the weekend offers in terms of music, mingling with the jazz artists, relaxing on the beach and enjoying great food, drinks and music.”