FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
FIVE WAYS SUMMER WILL BE SIZZLIN’ IN HILO
Hawaii Island – With summer around the corner, Hawaii, the Big Island is shaping up to be the perfect “hot” spot for all travelers seeking a little adventure in their getaway. As the youngest yet largest of the six main Hawaiian Islands, Hawaii Island offers visitors a variety of inspiring attractions and memorable experiences not to be missed in and around Hilo on the East side. With its small-town charm, close proximity to volcanoes and other historic attractions and non-stop flights daily from Los Angeles and weekly from San Francisco via United Airlines, there are many reasons Hilo will be sizzlin’ this summer. Here are five to get you started.
- Whole Lava Love – When you think of Hawaii, the Big Island, lava may be the first image that comes to mind, as the island is home to Kilauea, one of the most active volcanoes in the world. Erupting continuously since January 1983, one of the best ways to see and learn about volcanoes is at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage site and the most visited attraction on Hawaii Island.
On Saturday, July 14 from 10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m., Hawaii Volcanoes National Park will be celebrating its 32nd annual Cultural Festival, full of the sounds of Hawaiian music, traditional arts and crafts, and hula performances. On this day, the $10 entrance fee will be waived. For more information, visit www.nps.gov/havo.
- Star Light, Star Bright – Roughly 34 miles outside of Hilo, the Maunakea summit is the ideal location for stargazing. Considered one of the world’s best observing sites, Maunakea is home to 13 astronomical observatories. Visitors can make the trek to the Visitor Information Station at the 9,300-foot level for free nightly star tours. To learn about visiting Maunakea, check out www.ifa.hawaii.edu/info/vis before making the trek.
Closer to sea level in the town of Hilo, the Imiloa Astronomy Center of Hawaii is a planetarium, museum and educational resource that showcases the stars and its connection with the Hawaiian culture. Imiloa offers a variety of events, from 3D planetarium shows to exhibits, and even an animated Led-Zeppelin dome production on Friday nights. For more information, visit www.imiloahawaii.org.
- Hot Coffee Trend – One of Hawaii Island’s best-known crops is coffee. While Kona coffee is widely respected as one of the most popular on Earth, the Kau area is producing some of the world’s best, with three Kau coffee farms ranked among the top 10 in the Roaster Guild Specialty Coffee Association of America’s Coffee of the Year International competition for 2012.
Open in the village of Pahala, between Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and Punaluu Black Sand Beach, the Kau Coffee Mill offers visitors a chance to see the process, learn about farm life and take home coffee and other gifts. To make an appointment, contact Kau Coffee Mill at 808-928-0550 or visit www.kaucoffeemill.com.
- Big Island Hawaiian Music Festival – Hilo’s Afook Chinen Civic Auditorium will be the “hot” place to be when the 23rd Annual Big Island Hawaiian Music Festival takes the stage the weekend of July 14-15. This unique two-day event will celebrate Hawaiian music with everything from slack key guitar and ‘ukulele to steel guitar, falsetto singing and hula. Special appearances will include master musicians Cyril Pahinui, Sonny Lim and Dennis Kamakahi. Guests can also enjoy food, crafts and other exhibits for only $10 per day at the door. For more information, visit www.ehcc.org or call 808-961-5711.
- Run, Rain Forest, Run – For those looking to build a sweat, the Volcano Art Center is sponsoring a unique race through a rain forest and near an active volcano. Runners and walkers can lace up for the 3rd Annual Rain Forest Runs in Volcano Village on Saturday, August 18. With three types of courses – Half Marathon, 10K and 5K – the Rain Forest Runs will take participants through lush native rain forests for the 5K and 10K races while the Half Marathon traverses the more hilly upper ranch lands with distant views of Maunakea and Maunaloa volcanoes. There will also be two courses for keiki (children), a 100-yard dash and a 200-yard dash, making it a fun fitness event for the whole family. For more information or to register, visit www.volcanoartcenter.org and click on the “Rain Forest Runs” tab.