Entertainment, crafts, contests on tap at Kauai Kau Wela

  • TGIFR!DAY file

    Ilima Rivera presents Hawaiian history through ancient chants this evening at the 10th annual Kauai Kau Wela Summer Festival at the Hilton Garden Inn Kauai Wailua Bay.

  • TGIFR!DAY file

    Ilima Rivera and Na Kane O Kamokila are aboard the double-hulled canoe that makes its appearance by torchlight today to open the 10th annual Kauai Kau Wela summer festival at the Kamokila Hawaiian Village.

  • Dennis Fujimoto / TGIFR!DAY file

    Former Mayor Bernard Carvalho Jr. is accompanied by Chief Heifara on the nose flute as he renders “Beautiful Kauai” while Ilima Rivera dances, during an earlier festival at the Kamokila Hawaiian Village along the Wailua River.

Welcome the summer with dancing and chants, canoes and contests today at the 10th annual Kauai Kau Wela Festival.

Hula, live Tahitian drums, crafters and vendors, and contests will be at the Hilton Garden Inn Kauai Wailua Bay all day for the celebration. It all starts off early in the morning at Kamokila Hawaiian Village with the welcoming of the canoe at about 9 a.m.

The double-hulled canoe’s arrival has been a staple of the festival every year, and always sails into Kamokila Hawaiian Village from the Wailua River to celebrate Hawaii’s rich culture and kick off the summer season.

Once the canoe has landed and been welcomed, the celebration moves over to the Hilton Garden Inn Kauai Wailua Bay Kuhio Ballroom.

Food and craft vendors will begin selling at about noon, according to organizers, but there’s going to be much more available for people of all ages.

Try your hand at the hula hoop contest or the peacock contest, listen to Tahitian drums by master Tepairu Manea, and listen to live music.

Keiki between the ages of 5 and 13 can enter the canoe-building contest, which is ongoing in the ballroom from noon to 4 p.m. A cash-only entry fee of $5 will be charged to enter the contest, and contestants must bring their own building materials.

Those materials have to be made from natural fibers gathered from the island of Kauai, and the canoe can’t be bigger than one foot in length.

Fire will light up the evening at the sunset presentation of Hawaii history by Ilima Rivera and the Wailuanuihoano Warriors. They’ll perform ancient chants and stories, dances and a presentation called “Flames of Kau Wela,” which means “Hot Summer Lights up the Evening.”

Performers include Tepairu Manea, Haunani Kaui, Bev Kauanui, Tamatea Nui o Kauai, Wailana Dasalia, Randy and Primrose Naukana, Ilima and Na Kane o Wailuanuia Ho‘ano and more.

Ticket prices vary. The cost for the canoe arrival is $5 per person. Admission for afternoon events at the Hilton Garden Inn is $15 for adults and $7 for children. Tickets for the evening presentation of Kauai Kau Wela and pupus at Hilton Garden Inn are $35.

Info: 320-7603 or www.villagekauai.com


Jessica Else, staff writer, can be reached at 245-0452 or jelse@thegardenisland.com.


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