PUHI — The field in front of Kauai Community College was a beehive of activity Saturday, as the annual Garden Fair merged with the weekly farmers market and the Boy Scout Makahiki set up at the far end.
“This has been really good,” said Amber McClure, the marketing director for Moloaa Bay Coffee and Chocolate. “We were located toward the end of the tents in anticipation of people coming through the Kaumualii Highway end of the tents, but apparently, everyone is coming in from the top end. Overall, it has been good.”
Moloaa Bay Coffee and Chocolate was one of many from the regular Saturday lineup for the Kauai Community Market, a partnership with the Kauai County Farm Bureau and KCC. The annual Garden Fair expanded the weekly farmers market to include even more vendors providing information and products for shoppers.
The Makahiki featured activities for Boy and Cub Scouts from the island’s many troops, including a Pinewood Derby race, desserts created on-site and a rope course.
In between the Garden Fair and Makahiki, members of the Kauai 4-H Livestock Club set up a large tent and hosted a variety of family-friendly activities, including a popular petting zoo and an Easter-themed make-it-and-take-it stations where keiki could color Easter eggs and create Easter bunnies from towels.
4-H members were also available to help cart plant purchases as helpers for Garden Fair and market customers who needed assistance getting plants to their cars.
Katy Finney was looking for “one more bean plant” after scouring the sprawling event.
“I just need to get one more plant and I’m done shopping for today,” Finney said.
“Does anyone here have lei?” Sharron Weber wanted to know. “I’m heading to the Waimea High School Hall of Honor and I need lei for Mr. Nitta who is being inducted for football.”
She left holding a big pot of anthurium, noting vendors were pretty much sold out of a lot of things.
Donnie Ines was enjoying his plate lunch while carrying on a discussion about the Tower Garden being shown by Susie Heitmann of Juice Plus.
“This is not hydroponics,” Heitmann said. “This is aeroponics, the difference being that the plants are not immersed in nutrient solution. Instead, the nutrient solution is pumped up the middle in timed intervals and at the top, is rained onto the roots of the plants.”
Heitmann said the addition of the Tower Garden to her home has changed the eating habits of her children, who now like to eat vegetables being grown on the tower.
“We’re going to have it on display at the Kauai County Farm Bureau Fair, too,” Heitmann said. “Perhaps, we might be able to have several showing the different stages of plant growth on the tower.”