Kaiwin Clements, 11, of Warm Springs, Oregon, was aware of the humidity that blanketed Kapaa Beach Park Friday morning.

“I wish it was cold,” Clements said, beads of perspiration dripping from his face and head following his vigorous Hoop Dance presentation at the Kauai Powwow educational outreach program.

Clements started Hoop Dance when he was 2 years old, said Celina Garza of Maui, hostess of the outreach welcoming more than 500 students from Kauai’s schools to offer their welcome to “relatives” coming to Kauai for the powwow.

“It smells like bacon,” said Keani Cabral, a fifth-grade student from Kekaha Elementary School. “And it’s real noisy in there.”

Cabral was joined by her class in examining one of several tepees at Kapaa Beach Park for the powwow which continues through Sunday afternoon.David Ahuna had his two sons, Kawika and Nainoa, with him for the powwow.

“I feel so honored to be invited by the Kauai Powwow Council to participate in this event,” David said. “We flew in from Oahu this morning. I’m from the Chinese-Hawaiian nation, and our family of four all do Hoop Dance. Actually, the Ahuna ‘ohana — about 20 of us — does Hoop Dance, but only three of us were able to come to Kauai. We’re not Native American, but cousins.”

The 18th annual Kauai Powwow continues with traditional powwow drumming, dancing, arts, crafts from Native American and vendors, and fresh organic traditional Native American foods.

Gates open at 11 a.m. today and Sunday with the Grand Entry at 11:30 a.m.

The event is free.


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