The Islands of Hawaii
Senior Vice President
For Immediate ReleaseMay 06, 2014
THERE'S ALWAYS SOMETHING EXCITING AND NEW ON OAHU SPRING 2014
OAHU – The island of Oahu, known as the Heart of Hawaii, sets the rhythm of the islands with exciting new improvements, changes and additions on an ongoing basis. Below is a glimpse of the new and dynamic updates with Oahu’s Hotels & Resorts, Activities & Entertainments, Restaurants, Cuisine & Chefs, Shopping, Festivals & Events and Miscellaneous information, which includes airline and transportation updates.
Hotels & Resorts
The island of Oahu has a wide range of hotels and resorts for people of all ages and budgets. Oahu’s hotels are constantly updating and adding an array of activities and packages that are sure to make any trip to Oahu unforgettable.
• Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort debuted a series of rejuvenation projects and enhancements in February 2014. Guests can enjoy the Village’s newly upgraded Bali Steak & Seafood and Paradise Lounge, Tapa Bar, and new lobby and arrival experience. The resort will also complete the $4.25 million restoration of its iconic Rainbow Mural in June. The new mural, 285 feet high, will feature more than 31,000 tiles, and will replicate the original artwork done by Millard Sheets. www.hiltonhawaiianvillage.com
• Guests at Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa, can experience the 166,000-gallon Rainbow Reef Lagoon in a new, enhanced way. The new snorkel activity immerses you amongst 50 Hawaiian native fish species while in a supplied air snorkeling system, providing a unique aquatic journey. Guests must be eight years of age or older. The resort also brings unique salon and spa treatments with the new Keiki O Laniwai treatments. Girls, ages 3-12, can choose from three different salon treatments, featuring hairstyling with floral, manicure and pedicure, light makeup, an aloha dress and a touch of Disney pixie dust. For boys, ages 3-12, wanting to indulge in a new look, there is a Keiki kane treatment, which includes a new hairstyle, hook necklace, and temporary tattoo. www.DisneyAulani.com
• Embassy Suites Waikiki Beach Walk recently announced its new Historic Pearl Harbor Package, offering history buffs an up-close and personal tour of the ships, submarines and aircraft of Pearl Harbor. With a four-night stay at Embassy Suites, guests will receive two full-day “Passport to Pearl Harbor” tour passes to visit and explore four Pearl Harbor Historic Sites, including the USS Arizona Memorial, the Battleship Missouri Memorial, the USS Bowfin Submarine Museum and Park, and the Pacific Aviation Museum. Offer valid until Dec. 21, 2014. www.embassysuiteswaikiki.com
• Moana Surfrider, A Westin Resort & Spa has redefined the rejuvenating Hawaiian vacation experience with the completion of its “Timeless Revitalized” project, a $20 million-dollar transformation to 36 suites and 522 guestrooms in both Diamond and Tower Wings, and the new Beach Club offering exclusive access to Club Level room and Platinum SPG members. The six-month enhancement project brings new meeting spaces, new Penthouse Suites never-before-seen with locally-inspired furnishings, artwork and color templates to the forefront with a distinctly breezy, beach-inspired feel with modern, chic touches, while still maintaining the signature feel of rejuvenation. www.moana-surfrider.com
• Aston Waikiki Beach Hotel is rolling out a fresh new look across its 645 guest rooms and suites that is inspired by the contemporary cool of Waikiki and the natural beauty of Hawaii, creating a comfortable calm the moment you arrive. Enhancements have been made in the bathroom and near the lanai, improving storage and functionality where guests need them most. These conveniences add to an existing lineup of popular amenities that include a flat-screen TV, mini-refrigerator and PlayStation 3 console in each room. www.astonwaikikibeach.com
Activities & Entertainment
The island of Oahu is brimming with fun-filled activities that everyone can enjoy. Visitors to Oahu can explore Hawaii’s special culture and iconic history, or choose from a wide variety of outdoor and indoor activities that are sure to energize the spirit.
• The Polynesian Cultural Center is in the process of completing $100 million in experiential and facility improvements over a five-year period, which is scheduled to conclude by February 2015 with the grand opening of a newly expanded marketplace. The former Hukilau Marketplace is undergoing a complete reconstruction to make way for a new 119,000 square-foot venue that will provide visitors to Oahu’s North Shore with additional options for retail, dining and entertainment. The marketplace will feature Polynesian-themed specialty shops and kiosks with local apparel, lifestyle and home accent items, jewelry and souvenirs; food carts, a full-service restaurant, and bakery featuring the flavors of Polynesia; and a stage for live entertainment. www.polynesia.com
• Take a trip back in History on a one-hour guided tour of the Hawaii Theatre. The tour features the art, architecture and history of this historic theatre listed on the State and National Register of History Places. Tours cost $10 per person and are offered on Tuesdays at 11 a.m. www.hawaiitheatre.com
• The Pearl Harbor Historic Sites is now taking reservations for the USS Arizona Memorial Narrated Tour, its full day Passport to Pearl Harbor Tour, three Half Day Pearl Harbor Tours, and admission to the USS Bowfin Submarine, Battleship Missouri and Pacific Aviation Museum Pearl Harbor. www.PearlHarborHistoricSites.org
• Moana Surfrider, A Westin Resort & Spa is proud to present Hui Ho‘ala, a unique Hawaiian Ceremony of Renewal of Mind, Body, and Spirit which takes place on the public beach fronting the Moana Surfrider. The complimentary cultural experience is available to resort guests weekly on Wednesday mornings at 5:45 a.m. Hoala is the practice of getting into the correct mind-space. Participants line up along the seashore and chant traditional Hawaiian chants. At their own pace, participants are encouraged to wade into the ocean, in silence, immersing them in the calm morning ocean water. With the dawning of the sun, accompanied by the Hawaiian chant, this ceremony provides an opportunity to imbue life with renewed vitality, hope and happiness. www.moana-surfrider.com
• Hawaiian Hiking Company will lead hikes on Waimea Valley’s hidden trails and scenic wonders with a Native Hawaiian Guide. Participants will step back in time as they trek off the beaten path for a private guided hike filled with interesting historical and cultural information. Hikers will journey through a tropical Hawaiian forest; pass by ancient archeological sites and exotic plant species along the way. www.hawaiianhikingcompany.com
• Pacific Beach Hotel is excited to be the new venue of Waikiki’s latest luau dinner show. Tihati Productions is kicking off their newest show entitled Te Moana Nui- Tales of the Pacific. Te Moana Nui tells the stories of the voyage from the South Pacific to the islands of Hawaii. This newest show extends beyond the performance itself and guests are able to indulge in authentic Hawaiian delicacies as well as engage in various pre-show activities. www.temoananui.com
• In response to guest feedback from its first two years, Legends in Concert Waikiki will debut a completely revamped “Rock-A-Hula” experience in phases starting April 1. The new show, utilizing distinguished producers and local talent, will feature more Hawaiian elements, incorporated in everything from decor to music to enhanced island hospitality. Dinner and cocktail packages are available nightly at the 750-seat multimillion-dollar Royal Hawaiian Theater in the heart of Waikiki. www.rockahulahawaii.com
• Bishop Museum announced its next featured exhibition “Guitar: The Instrument That Rocked The World.” This dynamic touring exhibit will run from May 10, 2014 through Labor Day, Sept. 1, 2014. Visitors will experience 5,000 square-feet of the science, sound, history, and cultural impact of the guitar through both historical artifacts and engaging, hands-on displays. The exhibit features more than 60 musical instruments that range from the rare and antique to the wildly popular and innovative; from the viheula of 17th century Spain to the electric Fender Stratocaster, and to the guitar as re-imagined in the Guitar Hero video game. www.bishopmuseum.org
• Pedal Bike Tours recently opened in Waikiki. The new bike company offers bike rentals as well as tours of Honolulu and the North Shore designed for novice riders. Pedal Hawaii offers tours daily from their shop in the Queen Kapiolani Hotel, overlooking Diamond Head. Tours offered are “Hidden Honolulu” and “Explore the North Shore.” www.pedalbiketours.com
• The recently re-launched Waikiki Ocean Club, managed by Roberts Hawaii, allows guests to slide into the beautiful Pacific Ocean, revel in the thrills of the jet ski, skim the waves on a banana sled, explore underwater while snorkeling, glide the ocean blue on a kayak, enjoy sunning on the club’s spacious deck, and much more. The club is the only place where banana sleds and jet skis are allowed on Waikiki Beach. www.robertshawaii.com
• Have you always dreamed of riding in T.C.’s Chopper from your favorite television series of all time? The Magnum Experience includes a flyby of Waikiki as seen in the opening scene in the credits of each Magnum P. I. episode. The 60-minute flight also includes a flyby of: Robin’s Nest, Pearl Harbor, Kaneohe Bay, Kualoa Ranch, Sacred Falls and the world famous North Shore. www.paradisecopters.com
• Visitors to the Battleship Missouri Memorial will soon be able to share their experience with family and friends all over the world in real time. An Ozolio webcam is coming soon to Pier Foxtrot-5, where the USS Missouri is berthed, and will be set up to live stream near the site’s famed “Victory Kiss” statue directly in front of the great battleship. Anyone can tune into the webcam’s live stream by simply visiting the USS Missouri’s website and visitors can share the video stream using their social media accounts. www.ussmissouri.org
• Camp Wildlife Koa at the Honolulu Zoo helps children use research and scientific inquiry to learn why some specifies become endangered and how they can be saved. Keiki will have a chance to meet the zoo’s collection of threatened and endangered species from around the world, start their own wildlife conservation projects, participate in animal-themed lawn games and increase their knowledge through multi-media presentations for a truly unique experience. Open to children ages 9-11. www.honoluluzoo.org
Restaurants, Cuisine & Chefs
Oahu is known for its diverse culture, which is exhibited by the island’s assortment of foods. With wonderful choices and a vibrant array of cuisine options, there’s sure to be a restaurant for everyone.
• Bill Sydney founded by Australian chef Bill Granger has opened its first location in the United States on Waikiki Beach Walk. Bill Granger who is known for his fresh and easy take on Pacific Rim cuisine will feature salads, pizza, pastas and much more on the menu. The two story restaurant has a bar and casual dining upstairs and café downstairs. www.bills.com.au
• Known for its spectacular oceanfront view of Waikiki Beach, the redesigned Bali Steak & Seafood at the Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort now blends sophisticated elements with a vibrant color palette. The new menu concept is described as “Island Harvest Cuisine” by Executive Chef JJ Reinhart and will showcase flavors from Hawaii through locally-sourced ingredients. The new Paradise Lounge area encourages guests to relax in a tropical indoor space that blends seamlessly with Bali Steak & Seafood. www.hawaiianvillage.hilton.com
• Located in the heart of the Honolulu Cultural District, W Bistro at 1010 brings delicious farm-to-table delicacies. W Bistro at 1010 works with Hawaii’s local food producers to bring you locally grown dishes which are sure to satisfy the taste buds. Head chef Eric has had extensive culinary experience in the kitchens of Chai’s Island Bistro, 3660 On The Rise and Roy’s. The restaurant is conveniently located near the Blaisdell Concert Hall and is perfect for dining before heading to the show. www.wbistroat1010.com
• Moana Surfrider, A Westin Resort & Spa recently welcomed the exceptional culinary talents of Executive Chef Ryan Loo to oversee culinary creativity and operations for the resort’s banquets and catering services, and restaurants including Beachhouse at the Moana, Beach Bar, Surfrider Café, The Veranda, and BIN1901. Most recently, Loo served as the executive chef of W Seattle’s Earth and Ocean restaurant, banquets and catering, and in-room dining. Loo brings over 14 years of experience in the culinary industry with previous experiences including executive chef of Sheraton Waikiki’s former Twist at Hanohano, senior executive sous chef for Sheraton Waikiki’s restaurants and banquet services, chef de cuisine for Hoku’s and Cabana’s Seaside Grill at The Kahala Hotel & Resort, and rounds cook at the Greenbrier Resort in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia. www.moana-surfrider.com
• The Star of Honolulu’s signature Five Star Sunset Dining & Jazz Cruise is the ultimate in romance and luxury. On board, guests will experience an exclusive Captain’s Welcome Reception on the top deck, seven-course French style dinner served white-gloved, super premium beverages, live Jazz and breathtaking views of the Oahu coastline. Executive Chef Adam Gilbert presents an all-new Spring menu with live Maine lobster and prime tenderloin of beef as main entrees with the freshest and finest ingredients of the season. This special menu will be offered Apr. 1-June 30. www.starofhonolulu.com
• After many years of catering in Honolulu, Amy Brookes recently opened Cake Envy in downtown Honolulu. Her gourmet cheesecakes are hand-made in Hawaii and are served fresh every day. Cake Envy offers over 50 different unique flavors of cheesecake including green tea, maple bacon, double chocolate Jack Daniels and more to delight any sweet tooth. www.cakeenvy.net
• Restaurateur Kevin Hanney and Chef Lee Anne Wong opened Koko Head Café in Kaimuki in March. The island style brunch house has opened in the former 12th Ave Grill location and showcases some of Hawaii’s best products. The menu features unique dishes with an Asian twist and local favorites. Chef Lee Anne Wong was a contestant on the first season of Bravo’s reality show, Top Chef. www.kokoheadcafe.com
• Goofy Café in Waikiki is serving up delicious and healthy eats, sweets and drinks. The surf-style café recently opened up near the Hilton Hawaiian Village. With surfboards and repurposed drift wood used as decoration, the eatery gives off a relaxing beach vibe perfect for hungry beach goers. www.goofy-honolulu.com
• Izakaya Torae Torae recently opened in McCully by former Doraku executive chef, Hide Yoshimoto. The interior of the restaurant mixes traditional and contemporary Japanese elements and displays artwork by several local artists. On the menu you’ll find creative Japanese dishes and other features such as sushi, sashimi and more. www.facebook.com/pages/Izakaya-Torae-Torae
• Originally from Burma, owner Khun Sai recently opened Honolulu’s newest Burmese restaurant, Dagon. Although the cuisine is unfamiliar to most, Burmese food can be seen as a meet between Thai and Indian food. Dagon serves up dishes such as a Burmese red curry, tea leaf salad, vegetable kebat and much more. www.yelp.com/biz/dagon-honolulu-2
• Co-owners Dave Elliott and Nat Bletter recently opened their second Madre Chocolate location in Chinatown. The newest location will be a retail shop where you can purchase a variety of locally made chocolate as well as a café in the back serving other goodies. They will also have a monthly class and tour to learn about the bean-to-bar process. www.madrechocolate.com
• The Kahala Hotel & Resort continues its 50th Golden Jubilee celebrations in the spring. The hotel brings back its legendary weekend Hukilau and Polynesian Buffet on Apr. 4 and 5. It takes patrons back to the days of The Maile Restaurant when kimono clad staff served continental cuisine in a much more formal style of dining. The Kahala’s Executive Chef Wayne Hirabayashi and his culinary team will be joined by Chef Martin Wyss who presided over the kitchens at The Kahala in its early opening days and Chef Katsuya Yamamoto of The Hotel Okura Tokyo’s famous La Belle Époque Restaurant. www.kahalaresort.com
• The Royal Hawaiian, a Luxury Collection Resort welcomes new Chef de Cuisine of Azure Restaurant Shaymus Alwin. Originally from Kennebunkport, Maine, Chef de Cuisines Shaymus Alwin has embraced Hawaii’s deep rooted cultures and tastes. He studied at Chef Thomas Keller, The French Laundry in Yountville, California and has over twenty years of experience in the restaurant industry. Alwin joined Starwood Hotels & Resorts in 2010 as a sous chef for the award-winning Azure Restaurant at The Royal Hawaiian, a Luxury Collection Resort. His additional professional experiences include serving as the executive chef for Bistro Catering and sous chef for The Bistro at Century Center in Honolulu, Hawaii. www.royal-hawaiian.com
• Sheraton Waikiki unveils the new HAPAS, a creative local-style pizzeria as Sheraton Waikiki’s choice for people “on-the-go.” HAPAS offers fresh, nutritious and flavorful menu combinations for freshly made pizzas at the right price. Counter-style service allows guests to choose between made-to-order pizzas with over 75 fresh ingredients to choose from for toppings. www.sheraton-waikiki.com
• When on the North Shore, be sure to check out the Haleiwa Farmers Market. Every Thursday from 3-7 p.m. the Pikake Pavillion bustles with visitors from far and near as they peruse fresh produce, locally made goods, and foods prepared on site by various vendors. Live music sets the tone for a festive afternoon. www.haleiwafarmersmarket.com
Oahu is home to hundreds of fashionable designer stores, as well as markets that carry locally-made crafts. Visitors are sure to love the shopping experience no matter where they go.
• Illest Hawaii recently opened their first Hawaii location in Kakaako. The sleek new space fits right in with Kakaako’s urban scene. The boutique specializes in fun and colorful graphic tees and apparel. Although their brand is California-based, Illest Hawaii will feature designs that are exclusive to Hawaii. www.illestbrand.com
• Owner, Shie Clark opened We are Iconic, a new women’s apparel and accessories boutique near Ala Moana this year. With well known items from brands such as James Perse, Current/Elliott and Smyth, Lovers and Friends and more there’s a statement piece for everyone. www.shopweareiconic.com
• Kamehameha Schools signed 11 tenants who will be part of Haleiwa Store Lots (HSL) upon completion of construction in fall 2014. Located along Kamehameha Highway at the site of Matsumoto Shave Ice, Haleiwa Store Lots will feature Hawaii businesses, retailers and restaurants, including many with roots on the North Shore.
• Hennes & Mauritz, otherwise known as H&M opened its first Hawaii store at the Waikiki Business Plaza. The new H&M Waikiki flagship store known for their fashion-forward apparel will take up 31,000 square feet on three levels and will have collections for both women and men. www.hm.com
• Ala Moana Center, the world’s largest outdoor shopping center, announced the addition of Bloomingdale’s to open in late 2015. The 167,000-square-foot, three-level luxury department store will serve as the centerpiece of a major retail expansion and common area renovation at Ala Moana Center. This retail expansion will feature 650,000 square feet of retail, including Bloomingdale’s department store, large format retailers, dining, entertainment, and 200,000 square feet of inline retailers. www.alamoanacenter.com
Festivals & Events
Oahu is home to the largest number of festivals and events in Hawaii. Each year, visitors have the opportunity to connect with the local community and experience renowned events that showcase the island’s rich arts and culture scene, the world’s top amateur and professional sporting competitions and championships, and the many ethnic celebrations that are exclusive to Hawaii.
• Honolulu Night Market: On the third Saturday of every month, Kakaako comes alive with an evening event that combines fashion, live music, art, shopping and local food. Held under the Honolulu city lights, this monthly night market celebrates the best of urban island culture featuring local artists, designers, musicians and chefs. www.honolulunightmarket.com
• The Hawaii International Film Festival Spring Showcase takes place this week Apr. 4-10. The festival is dedicated to the advancement of understanding and cultural exchange among the peoples of Asia, the Pacific and North America through the medium of film. HIFF showcases independent feature films and is held at the Signature Dole Cannery Theatres each spring and fall. Expect the very best and latest in independent and global cinema. www.hiff.org
• World Champion big wave surfer Jamie Sterling and Nadia Bonenfant, founder of JUNA Yoga Retreats, will lead a week of yoga and surf sessions during the first-ever Fluid Yoga Surf Retreats on Apr. 4-10 and May 2-8, at Turtle Bay Resort on Oahu’s Fabled North Shore. The sessions will feature surf lessons, outdoor massage treatment at the new Nalu Kinetic Spa, hikes, and the resort’s popular new stand-up paddleboard yoga workshops, and are open to all levels of experience, solo or as a couple. www.turtlebayresort.com
• C!rca: Tim Bostock Productions presents the remarkable Australian contemporary circus C!RCA for five shows at the Neal Blaisdell Concert Hall from the Apr. 9-13. The cast combines dance with physical theater to produce a combination of acrobatic and tumbling sequences which make up a show that’s extraordinarily energetic, powerful and sexy. www.blaisdellcenter.com
• The City & County of Honolulu and State of Hawaii Department of Health will celebrate Earth Day with Mauka to Makai at the Waikiki Aquarium on Apr. 13. This family-friendly event will feature hands on educational displays and showcase more than 20 city, state, and federal agencies that are aimed to preserve and protect Hawaii’s environment. There will be an emphasis on the Island’s unique water resources from mauka to makai. The event is free with admission to the Aquarium. www.waquarium.org
• Lace up those running shoes for The Hapalua, Hawaii’s Half Marathon, happening Apr. 13. The 13.1-mile course takes runners through Waikiki to downtown Honolulu and back, finishing with a loop around stunning Diamond Head toward Kapiolani Park. Race participants can also run in support of their favorite charity. Official hotel sponsor Outrigger Hotels and Resorts is offering special room rates for participants and spectators. www.outrigger.com/outrigger-sports/hapalua
• The world’s finest female golf professionals including Inbee Park, Suzann Pettersen, Lydia Ko, So Yeon Ryu, Shanshan Feng and more will return to Oahu, Apr. 16-19 for the 2014 LPGA LOTTE Championship presented by J Golf. The third annual LPGA LOTTE Championship event attracts 144 of the world’s top players who will tee up at Ko Olina Golf Club to compete for a share of the $1.7 million purse. Tournament week starts with the qualifying tournament scheduled on Sunday, Apr. 13. Professional practice rounds and a golf clinic are scheduled on Monday, Apr. 14; the Official Pro-Am will tee off on Tuesday, Apr. 15; and the LPGA’s official tournament rounds run Wednesday through Saturday, Apr. 16 - 19. www.lottechampionship.com
• The Hawaii Academy of Recording Artists will present the fourth Annual Mele Mei, a month-long celebration of Hawaiian music, in May 2014. Mele Mei will encompass more than 30 workshops, concert performances, the Lei of Stars Dinner Concert on May 1, the Lifetime Achievement Awards Luncheon on May 3, the Hawaii Youth Symphony Luncheon on May 18, Ukulele Picnic on May 25, plus a variety of hula events at the Waikiki Hula Mound and will culminate with the 37th Annual Na Hoku Hanohano Awards on May 24. www.melemei.com
• Lei Day Celebration On May 1, a celebration that includes entertainment, food booths and a lei-making contest takes place at the beautiful Queen Kapiolani Park and Bandstand in Waikiki. The event is followed by an honoring of Hawaii’s alii at Mauna Ala and Kawaiahao on May 2. Lei Day was created to celebrate the Hawaiian custom of making and wearing lei. This year marks the 87th anniversary of the celebration of Lei Day in Hawaii. www.honoluluparks.com
• The 12th Annual Waikiki SPAM Jam is set for May 3, all in celebration of Hawaii’s love affair with the delicious luncheon meat. Kalakaua Avenue will be closed to traffic from 4 to 10 p.m. for a festive street party, with visitors and locals enjoying arts, crafts, two entertainment stages and an extensive spread of SPAM-themed dishes served by some of Honolulu’s finest restaurants. The event is held as a fundraiser for the Hawaii Foodbank. www.spamjamhawaii.com
• Kumu Hula Patrick Makuakane and his award-winning dance troupe, Na Lei Hulu I Ka Wekiu, return to the Hawaii Theatre May 9-10 for Ka Leo Kanaka (Voice of the People), with 20 new dance pieces featuring traditional hula and Makuakane’s renowned hula mua, which blends Hawaiian dance with modern music. www.hawaiitheatre.com
• Bank of Hawaii Presents the Hawaii Book & Music Festival May 3 and 4 on the Frank F. Fasi Civic Grounds at Honolulu Hale. The event is held in celebration of story and song and features presentations by local, national and internationally celebrated authors, music and stage performances, panel discussions and activities for the kids. www.HawaiiBookAndMusicFestival.org
• On May 18 thousands of triathletes from around the world visit Oahu each May to compete in the Honolulu Triathlon. The Olympic distance triathlon features a 1.5K swim, 40K bike and 10K run that begins and ends at Ala Moana Beach Park. www.honolulutriathlon.com
• The 6th Annual Ukulele Picnic in Hawaii will take place May 23-25. There will be three signature events including a fundraising concert on May 23, an international ukulele contest on May 24 for amateur Ukulele players from all over the world, and the 6th Annual Ukulele Picnic in Hawaii event on May 25. The fundraising concert will be with the Ukulele Museum and held at The Republik. Pupus, drinks and a silent auction will be available to raise funds for a Ukulele Museum planned for construction in the Kakaako area. www.ukulelepicnicinhawaii.org
• Manoa Valley Theatre presents Pulitzer Prize winning drama Clybourne Park from May 22-June 8. Written in response to Lorraine Hansberry’s A Raisin in the Sun (1959), the play portrays fictional events set before and after the Hansberry play and is loosely based on historical events. It explodes in two outrageous acts set fifty years apart and shows the now predominantly African-American neighborhood as it battles to hold its ground in the face of gentrification. www.manoavalleytheatre.com.
• On Memorial Day, May 26, thousands of people will gather at Magic Island at Ala Moana Beach Park for Lantern Floating Hawaii to honor ancestors and loved ones who have passed away. At sundown, more than 3,000 candlelit lanterns are set afloat on the ocean, a traditional Buddhist rite originating in Japan. The ceremony serves to honor those who have sacrificed their lives in war, pay respect to ancestors and loved ones who have passed away, and pray for a harmonious and peaceful future. The ceremony also features live entertainment by local and international musicians, as well as inspiring speeches. www.lanternfloatinghawaii.com
• Each June, the Waikiki Aquarium, NOAA and the Mayor’s Office of Culture and the Arts team up to celebrate World Oceans Month through marine-themed education, art, music, film and service projects around Oahu, to include ocean-inspired films, a musical performance by Johnson Enos, Honu by the Sea, at the Aquarium, an art exhibit at Honolulu Hale from June 5-20, and fun educational activities for the family led by Pacific Islands Ocean Observing System throughout the month such as an ocean acidification booth, ocean mapping activities and shark-tagging discussions.
• The Aloha International Piano Festival, Competition and Piano Academy will take place June 7-15 at Hawaii Convention Center. Each year, the Festival presents master classes with concert pianists, a piano competition, the Piano Academy, and concert series showcasing world-class artists. www.alohapianofestival.com
• Rainbow Film Festival will return June 10-15. The festival serves to educate and raise community awareness about gay and lesbian culture, arts and lifestyle through independent films shown at the Doris Duke Theatre. Locally submitted films are also featured and supported by the festival. www.hglcf.org
• The Ke Kani O Ke Kai Summer Concert Series will take place June 12 and 26, July 10 and 24, and August 7 to the Waikiki Aquarium lawn. The annual summer concert series will feature popular local artists performing live on the Aquarium lawn. This is the perfect event for family and friends of all ages. The aquarium galleries will remain open throughout the evening. www.waquarium.org
• The 35th annual Pan-Pacific Festival, June 13-15, is a three-day international cultural celebration that features a weekend of Pacific Rim cultural performances, demonstrations, hula, food, hoolaulea (block party).The event culminates with a colorful parade with thousands of participants in lively costumes marching down Kalakaua Avenue in Waikiki. www.pan-pacific-festival.com
• 98th Annual King Kamehameha Floral Parade will take place on June 14. This colorful celebration honors the reign of King Kamehameha, who was responsible for uniting the Hawaiian Islands under his rule in 1810. The parade features brightly decorated floats, energetic marching bands and traditional pau riders who represent a Hawaiian royal court on horseback. http://hawaii.go/dags/king_kamehameha_commission/
• Waikiki Beach Walk has brought back its popular monthly concert series Na Mele No Na Pua Sunday Showcase. The free concert series includes live music performances every third Sunday of the month from 5 -6 p.m. at the Waikiki Beach Walk Plaza Stage. www.waikikibeachwalk.com
• The fourth annual Hawaii Food & Wine Festival will be held from Aug. 29 – Sept. 7, on Maui, Oahu and Hawaii Island with six signature evening events and 10 daytime excursions, activities and programs. As the premier epicurean destination event in the Pacific, the Festival features a roster of more than 80 internationally renowned chefs, culinary personalities, and wine and spirit producers. Co-founded by two of Hawaii’s own James Beard Award-winning chefs, Roy Yamaguchi and Alan Wong, the Festival will showcase wine tastings, one-of-a-kind excursions, exclusive dining opportunities and a new kids event with dishes highlighting the state’s bounty of local produce, seafood, beef and poultry. Proceeds support local beneficiaries committed to sustainability, cultural and educational programs in Hawaii. www.hawaiifoodandwinefestival.com
• Hawaiian Airlines will begin non-stop service three times weekly between Honolulu and Beijing, its first Mainland China gateway destination, on Apr. 16, subject to government approval. The airline will also add a fourth flight to its weekly non-stop service between Honolulu and Brisbane beginning Mar. 31. The expansion will add more than 20,000 seats to the Australia-Honolulu travel markets in 2014. Hawaiian Airlines also announced the cancellation of their Taipei service beginning April 2014. www.hawaiianairlines.com
All information is subject to change without notice. For more information, please go to www.visit-oahu.com, follow OVB’s tweets at www.twitter.com/OahuVB, or become a fan of Oahu on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/OahuHawaii, and follow OahuVB on Instagram.
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