FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
DECEMBER'S SIZZLIN' NEWS FROM HAWAII, THE BIG ISLAND
HAWAII ISLAND - The holidays are upon us and there is no better place to celebrate with family and friends than Hawaii, the Big Island! Ring in the Christmas season and the New Year with these new special holiday deals and events.
HOLIDAY SPECIALS & EVENTS
Celebrate the holiday season at Imiloa Astronomy Center. On Friday nights (Dec 2 to 30) at 7:00 p.m., enjoy “Mystery of the Christmas Star.” The planetarium show takes audiences on a journey back 2,000 years to Bethlehem to discover a possible scientific explanation for the star the wise men followed to find the baby Jesus. Visit www.imiloahawaii.org for more information.
Visions of sugarplums will dance in your head at the 23rd annual scholarship fundraiser “Christmas at The Fairmont-Dining with the Chefs.” Presented by the ACF Kona Kohala Chefs Association and benefiting West Hawaii Community College culinary students, the gala will be held from 5:30-8 p.m. on Saturday, December 3 at The Fairmont Orchid, Hawaii. Enjoy delectable cuisine by over 20 Hawaii Island chefs, dancing under the stars, and live and silent auctions. Tickets are $75, charge by phone. Call (808) 329-2522 for details and be sure to look for updates on Facebook (Christmas At The Fairmont). On December 31, visit the property for a masquerade under the stars! Ring in the new year with an extravagant dinner and dessert buffet, full hosted bar, Hawaiian arts and crafts, moonlit canoe rides, Polynesian fire spectacular, dancing, midnight champagne toast and masks. This celebration will go from 7:00 p.m. – 12:15 a.m. Tickets for the dinner and show are $200+tax for adults and $125+tax for guests under 21. Visit www.fairmont.com/orchid for more information.
Keauhou Beach Resort in Kona will be offering an excellent Prime Rib Seafood Buffet to commemorate the holiday season. The buffet will be offered December 16, 17, 23, 24, 30 and 31 from 5:30-9:00 p.m. The Bountiful Buffet is only $34.95 for adults and $17.50 for children 6-12 years old (children under 6 are at no charge). The menu includes Alae Red Hawaiian Sea Salt Crusted Prime Rib, Beef Steamed Snow Crab Legs, Herb Crusted Pork Roast with Port Wine Sauce, Island Style Poke, Mussels, Peel and Eat Shrimp and many other sumptuous dishes and excellent desserts. For information or reservations call 808-324-2512. The hotel is also offering room rates from $99. Book a room through the website, www.keauhoubeachresort.com or call 808-324-2515.
Hawaii Island Retreat’s festive calendar commences on December 21, when it celebrates the winter solstice with a traditional Hawaiian sunrise ceremony followed by a sumptuous brunch. We honor the first night of Chanukah with the lighting of the menorah and on December 23rd, Chef Mo will lead a Christmas Cookie Bake-off. On December 25th, a traditional Christmas menu with all of your favorite treats is served. The featured Holiday Spa treatment is Pumpkin Treat, a brown sugar-vanilla scrub, followed by a pumpkin spice wrap, that makes a great holiday gift. Join Hawaii Island Retreat for the holidays and call 808-889-6336 or email email@example.com.
Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel will be offering special holiday menus on Sunday, December 25 at its Coast Grille and Ocean Terrace restaurants. Enjoy a festive Christmas Dinner at Coast Grille from 5:30-9:00 p.m. that includes Island Pumpkin Bisque, Duck Confit and Warm Pear Crostada for $50.00 per person or order from a limited ala carte menu. Ocean Terrace will be serving up delectable dishes including Oven Roasted Big Island Boar at their Christmas Dinner Buffet from 6:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m. Prices are $65.00 for adults and $32.50 for children ages 5-12 (no charge for children under 5 years old). Call (808) 880-1111 or visit www.princeresortshawaii.com for more information.
‘Tis the season to celebrate at Kings’ Shops at Waikoloa Beach Resort, a premier shopping and dining destination on the Kohala Coast! This outdoor shopping oasis brings both the Kamaaina (resident) and Malihini (visitor) together with performances by Parker School’s International Thespian Society, followed by Alohi Polynesian Dance Academy and Hawaii Preparatory Academy’s Handbell Group on December 10th along with a strolling Hawaii-style Santa for picture taking. Enjoy one of the excellent dining options at Roy’s Waikoloa Bar & Grill, Merriman’s Market Café and the new Eddie Aikau Restaurant & Surf Museum. Follow Kings’ Shops on Facebook (Kings Shops Waikoloa), visit www.kingshops.com, or call (808) 443-5034 for more information.
December 1 starts the holding period for the world-famous Quicksilver in Memory of Eddie Aikau. The big wave surf meet takes place on Oahu, but Hawaii Island’s new Eddie Aikau Restaurant & Surf Museum in Kings’ Shops is gearing up for the season with special holiday menus and fun surf memorabilia, like a replica of Eddie’s North Shore lifeguard stand #29. Follow them on Facebook (Eddie Aikau Restaurant) or Twitter (@EddieRestaurant) for more information.
Royal Kona Resort is offering delicious holiday menus at its oceanfront Don the Beachcomber Restaurant. The Christmas Eve Dinner special includes jumbo shrimp salad, slow-roasted 10-oz. prime rib or guava-honey glazed ham, and double chocolate mousse with fresh berries. Cost is $38.95 per person. For Christmas Day Dinner, enjoy lobster bisque, one-pass serve yourself buffet with prime rib, honey glazed ham, crab-crusted salmon and sides, and a white chocolate, gingerbread and peppermint bark mousse. Cost is $38.95 for ages 12 & older and $18.50 for ages 6-11 (no charge for children under 6 years old with paying adult). Tax and gratuity not included. Restrictions may apply. For reservations call (808) 329-3111 ext. 6238.
ADVENTURES, ACTIVITIES & EVENTS
Visitors can now take advantage of 10 of the Island’s best-known cultural, historical, and science centers throughout Hawaii Island – at a discount! For $8, the Big Island Museum Pass provides up to a net $54 in savings on entry fees for two adults to Hawaii’s top educational attractions. Participating museums: Lyman Museum, Imiloa Astonomy Center, Pacific Tsunami, Laupahoehoe Train, Anna Ranch, Astronaut Ellison Onizuka Space Center, Hulihee Palace, Kona Historical Society’s Greenwell Store and Kona Coffee Farm, and Greenwell Ethnobotanical Garden. Visit www.destinationhilo.com for details.
February 1 is the last call for narrative film submissions to the Big Island Film Festival, taking place May 24-28, 2012 at The Fairmont Orchid, Hawaii and The Shops at Mauna Lani. Movie magic under the stars for all ages - plus celebrity social events and professional filmmaking workshops make this one of MovieMaker magazine's "Coolest Film Festivals." Visit www.bigislandfilmfestival.com for more information.
Join the Paniolo Preservation Society and Kahilu Theatre on December 30 at 5:30 p.m. for a film night featuring paniolo stories as part of the theatre’s all-free Makana Series. Three great shorts sharing a glimpse of paniolo (Hawaiian cowboy) heritage will give viewers a first-hand look at Hawaii’s unique paniolo story. Call (808) 541-8541 or visit www.paniolopreservation.org for more information.
Enjoy a day at Imiloa Astronomy Center and take advantage of its planetarium offerings this season. “Tales of the Maya Skies” every day at noon presents the rich history and culture of the ancient Maya civilization at Chichen Itza, immersing audiences in Maya science, art and mythology. Starting January 7 at noon, “Wildest Weather in Our Solar System” will fly audiences through the thick atmosphere of Venus, magnetic storms on the sun, liquid methane showers on Titan, and anticyclones whirling at hundreds of miles per hour on Jupiter. Visit www.imiloahawaii.org for more information.
Join Wild Hawaii Ocean Adventures for an unforgettable five-hour journey south on the beautiful Kona coast heading to the most pristine and isolated green sand beach. Accessible only by boat, it will be your private green sand paradise to soak the sun, have your lunch, relax and play with the softest and greenest sand you'll ever see. On the way back, ride close to the shoreline with the famous Fast Boat Ride. Stop at various points of interest, see lava tubes, blow holes, and incredible rock formations pounded by the waves. Learn about the wild Hawaii that you can only truly appreciate away from the crowd. Call (808) 854-4401 or visit www.wild-hawaii.com for more information.
Hawaii Volcanoes National Park continues its tradition of sharing Hawaiian culture and After Dark in the Park programs with the community and visitors throughout December. These programs are free, but park entrance fees apply. Mark your calendars for these upcoming events this month:
Coral Road: The Poetry of Garrett Hongo. Garrett Hongo’s long-awaited third collection of poems continues his literary explorations into the history of the impermanent homeland his immigrant ancestors found in Hawaii. Tuesday, December 6, 7:00 p.m. at the Kilauea Visitor Center Auditorium.
The Kuahiwis Live in Concert. Back by popular demand, the Kuahiwis bring their special blend of Hawaiian music, hula, and family deeply rooted in the volcanic soil of Hawaii. Tuesday, December 13, 7:00 p.m. at the Kilauea Visitor Center Auditorium.
Kalo. Join Sam and Edna Baldado as they share their knowledge and cultural uses of the kalo (taro) plant. Kalo is highly significant to Hawaiians, and is used for many things, including food, medicine, glue, and dyes. Wednesday, December 14 from 10:00 a.m – 12:00 p.m. on the Kilauea Visitor Center lanai.
John Keawe Live in Concert. Award-winning slack-key (kihoalu) guitarist, composer and recording artist, John Keawe, brings his warm, original style of music to Hawaii Volcanoes National Park for the holidays. His wife Hope provides moving interpretations of his music with her graceful hula. Tuesday, December 20 at 7:00 p.m. in the Kilauea Visitor Center Auditorium.
Hula and Mele with Haunani’s Hula Expressions. Come sing along to your favorite Hawaiian melodies with this award-winning group of lively elders (kupuna) who sing and dance hula to the sweet sound of “hapa haole” music, and make all of their own costumes and lei. Wednesday, December 21 from 6:30-8:00 p.m. in the Kilauea Visitor Center Auditorium.
Ukulele with Oral Abihai. Join Oral Abihai as he shares his passion for making ukulele from discarded or naturally fallen pieces of wood. Wednesday, December 28 from 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. on the Kilauea Visitor Center lanai.
Explore Hawaii Island with Arnott’s Lodge’s Fire and Ice packages sure to fit any budget. Tour Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and watch the fiery glow of Halemaumau emerge as the sun sets. Travel to Maunakea and be mesmerized by the beautiful sunset then enjoy a journey with the stars. Head down Puna to see lava. Travel to the west and swim with the dolphins in the morning or dive with manta rays at night. Call (808) 987-5873 or visit www.arnottslodge.com for more information.
Experience one of the wonders of the universe at Bougainvillea Bed and Breakfast! Guests are given the opportunity to view their "Stars and Heavens" with no interference from lights and lamination! Choose from reclining on chaise lounge chairs by the pool or relaxing in the hot tub with or without BYOB bubbles. December room reservations are still available at $89.00 double + tax. Call (808) 929-7089 or visit www.bougainvilleabedandbreakfast.com for more details.
Hawaii Vacation Rentals, Inc. is offering a $50 Gift Certificate at the Puako General Store at 7 Puako Beach Drive, conveniently located in Puako when you rent a vacation home or condo on the Kohala Coast! Just mention this offer. Call (800) 332-7081 or visit www.vacationbigisland.com for more information.
The James Beard Foundation Celebrity Chef Tour returns to The Mauna Lani Bay Hotel & Bungalows on January 20 & 21, 2012. Enjoy the best and freshest Hawaii Island produce prepared by celebrity chefs including Ming Tsai, Jonathan Waxman, Tyler Florence, Sam Choy and Mauna Lani's Executive Chef, Sandy Tuason. Celebrity cocktail mixologist Manny Hinojosa will also return to Hawaii to shake up signature drinks across the weekend. For more information visit www.maunalani.com.
Brown’s Beach House, The Fairmont Orchid, Hawaii’s award winning signature oceanfront restaurant is the recipient of the 2012 AAA Four Diamond Rating, only one of two restaurants on Hawaii Island recognized for the prestigious award. The restaurant’s island-inspired cuisine blends fresh Hawaiian fish and the finest locally grown produce, meats and herbs for seasonal offerings and the ambiance provides the perfect setting for dinner under the palm trees accompanied by a solo Hawaiian guitarist. Visit www.fairmont.com/orchid for more information.
On December 10, the Ironman Championship Kona 2011 will air on NBC SPORTS at 4:30pm EST. Captain Zodiac Rafting Adventures had the privilege to be chosen as the company to take the NBC film crews out for the swim portion of the race. Their expert captains and maneuverable zodiacs allowed NBC to film on and below the water, and the results were breathtaking, as seen by the enormous crowds watching “Ironman Live” on the giant screen located on the Kailua-Kona Pier. The Ironman World Triathlon takes place every October on the Big Island, starting and finishing at the Kailua Pier - a 2.4-mile swim, 112-mile bike, and 26.2-mile run. Only true athletes come and compete on this day! Please join us in watching this fantastic event. Be prepared to be out of breath by the end of the race!