Archive for October, 2011

Okay, this might not be fun to the average party-goer, but for those of you out there who love to stay in shape and work out hard, this event is for you. This year on October 30th, come to Kauai for a Triathlon!

What’s special about this particular triathlon? Well, it will be a costume Sprint! That’s right – as far as I can tell, the runners will be in costume… at least some of them anyway.

The triathlon will include a ¼ mile swim, a 14 mile bike ride, and a 3.5 mile run. Of course, you can sign up just to run if you aren’t the swimming/biking type. Entry costs for the triathlon are $60 or $30 for just the running portion. A t-shirt is included in the cost.

So, if a good workout the day before Halloween sounds like fun to you, come to Brennekes Beach Park in Poipu at 7am to sign up.

October 25, 2011 by, Emily

Never fear – the Boo Ball is here!

This year on Friday, October 28, Kauai Veteran’s Center in Lihue will be hosting a Boo Ball, a costume party and dance for anyone who wants to have a spooky good time. There will be live music by String Theory, costume contests, beer and wine, prizes, and a photo booth so you can capture the memories.

Of course, this particular party isn’t free. In fact, if I were you, I would buy my tickets in advance – you can do so on this website. The cost for admission is $25.00, but it is well worth it. How do I know? Well, I’m planning on attending myself. I have a costume ready to go… will you be able to guess who I am? Plus, if you see me, I can introduce my new fiancée, who has an equally awesome costume picked out for this event.

So come to Kauai and party is style this Halloween weekend!

Halloween is fast approaching. What does this mean?

CANDY!

Okay, there is a bit more to it than that. For instance, there are some great parties and events happening this month. And I’m going to list a few here in my blog to give you an idea of what you can do when Fright Night approaches.

Let’s start with… Hanapepe Spook Night!

There is a Spook Night party in Hanapepe every year in the Town Park. Typically, this event runs from the afternoon into the evening with a costume parade, prizes, refreshments, a haunted house (at Storybook Theatre), and much more. And this event is always free to the public.

Honestly, I haven’t heard when their Spook Night will take place this year. Usually it’s on Halloween night or a day before or after. But you can keep checking back with the Storybook Theatre website and they will probably post something soon.

Okay, that’s the tip for the day: Spook Night. Soon I’ll post another idea of where you can go and what you can do to have some spooky fun on Kauai this week.

Have you heard of the Hawaiiana Festival? It was a festival that happened on Kauai every year, an event to educate attendees about Hawaiian cultural practices and arts. During this festival, there would be many different exciting activities from arts and crafts demonstrations and classes to talk-story sessions where the cultural histories of Kauai would come to life in vivid stories. This unique festival was always a highlight on the island. But if you can’t find any information on it, that’s because it has combined with another festival!

The Malama Ola Festival is about health and healing practices. Many health practitioners from varying fields are on hand during this festival to demonstrate medical techniques, offer participation in health-related activities, and teach new skills. It is an educational festival as well as a fun way to learn a bit more about health and healing.

When the Malama Ola Festival is combined with the Hawaiiana Festival, you get a brand new festival filled with educational activities and demonstrations on cultural as well as medical practices. Plus, there’s a pretty awesome lunch buffet! This new festival is called the Na Lima Hana Festival.

Na Lima Hana means “many hands working,” and it is definitely a festival that takes a large number of working hands! This combined festival ends up being quite a bit larger than either of the original festivals individually, essentially doubling the workload for those involved in its presentation. Luckily, the Spirit of Aloha brings us all together in a spirit of cooperation and accomplishment.

This year, Na Lima Hana is taking place October 26th through the 29th. That’s right – It’s coming up soon! So if you are on the island next week, come and check it out. I’m sure you will enjoy yourself.

Well, maybe it’s not a real castle, but how about a beautiful and spacious vacation rental home with a rock wall around the outside? If you are coming to Kauai and plan on stay on the North side of the island, I recommend Hale Ylang Ylang as your temporary home. Why? Because it’s nothing short of a wonderful escape from the rigors of life.

Hanalei Bay is one of the biggest tourist attractions in Kauai, a crescent shaped bay of white sand against crystal blue waters and backed by luscious mountains. And Hale Ylang Ylang is a short walk from the bay. In fact, from the second story of this well-furnished home, you can see the bay as well as the mountains. The view is truly breathtaking, but a pretty picture isn’t all this town home has to offer.

Upstairs you will find a large living room decorated with wood floors, warm tones, and soft plush couches. Add to this a DVD/CD player, cable TV, and high speed internet access and you have all of the comforts of home. The kitchen is also on the second floor, fully equipped with all you should need to prepare delightful meals for your whole family. This gourmet kitchen has an island counter to make prep easy and bar counter seating so your friends and family members can chat with you while you cook.

At the end of each day, you can journey downstairs where you will find two private master bedrooms containing King-sized beds and en suite bathrooms. There is even an outdoor shower for each suite so you can visit Hanalei Bay and then rinse off before slipping under the sheets. Of course, two suites mean that you can easily make this getaway a trip for two couples. While many vacation rentals, including this one, can easily accommodate a small family, finding a rental that allows privacy for two couples is much harder. Yet, with this rental, you can grab your best friends and vacation in style right near the beach!

Hale Ylang Ylang really does provide everything you might need to enjoy your vacation: a place to cook, a place to sleep, a beautiful view, a close proximity to adventure, a privacy shield made of rock, and a private lanai on which you can lounge. And if that weren’t enough, you would also be just a short walk away from town, a place where you can go shopping, eat at quality restaurants, enjoy some spa services, or rent equipment for water sports and other activities. This place has it all.

I’ll admit to having a certain fondness for the hula. It’s such an intoxicating dance of smooth movements and rapid progressions, a story to a song. When I was little I learned to hula at school, but I was never an expert in the art of weaving a song together with my hips (as my teacher used to say). I do, however, love to watch the truly spectacular dancers; they cause the hula to come alive whenever they perform.

Of course, I’m not alone. One of the most commonly asked questions I get from tourists is about hula dances. They want to know if they can take lessons, if they can watch an “authentic hula dance,” or if I can hula. Apparently, there are people from the mainland who think we hula all day here on Kauai. (I admit… that would be fun!)

Hula is inspiring, for tourists and residents alike. And what better way to honor the hula than to watch award winning hula dancers on stage? So, if you want to watch an amazing hula being performed, come to Kauai on October 22nd.

Saturday, October 22nd, there will be a performance in Lihue at the Kauai War Memorial Convention Hall. There, from 5-9pm, there will be live music, hula dancing, cultural information, food booths, crafts, and much more. Live musicians from Kauai and Oahu will play throughout the evening, and the entire event will be both child-friendly and fun.

So, if you can come to Kauai on the 22nd, please make it a goal to do so. You won’t want to miss this wonderful show.

October 15, 2011 by, Emily

When wonderful things happen, I like to write about them. Actually I prefer to shout about them on rooftops… but I’m rather afraid of heights, so writing becomes a safe and efficient alternative.

I’M ENGAGED!!!

It’s true. Remember that guy I mentioned who was always taking me out to new restaurants and new island attractions so I could put them in my blog? Well, he asked and I said yes. AND because he knows me so well, he did it in a very unique way.

He offered to take me to a talk-story demonstration, an event that tells the history of our island in story form. These talk-stories used to be the only form of our history many many years ago before the written language was used on our island. Today, some of the locals learn these ancient stories to tell them to our generation and the next so they won’t be forgotten. They are such an important part of our culture and, as a history lover, I simply can’t get enough of them! This demonstration was supposed to be for tourists, but he had something else in mind.

Apparently, my boyfriend (now fiancée) had a chat with the storyteller a day or so beforehand and they struck up a bargain. So, at the end of the story, after the applause was over, the storyteller announced that he had one more short story to tell. And he began to tell an epic story of love involving a princess and a very undeserving servant boy. It was an enchanting tale, but I’d never heard it before. As I sat enraptured with this lovely story, my husband-to-be pulls out a ring. And the story’s climax went something like this:

Storyteller: “The servant boy was willing to give up everything for his princess, showing her his deep love and affection by presenting her with a ring…”

(And we ended up under a spotlight and my boyfriend had the ring out and was on one knee.)

Storyteller and my boyfriend: “’Do you love me princess?’ asked the servant boy. And the princess answered…”

(Then everyone looked at me. I looked at my boyfriend. I nodded.)

My boyfriend (the storyteller let him take it from there): “Then will you marry me, my princess? I might not have much, but I will love you more than any other man ever could.”

Of course, you can imagine the rest. There was affirmation, kissing, clapping from the audience, and a laughter-filled ending from the storyteller when he informed the crowd that the servant boy’s story was not an actual historical event… in case they couldn’t figure it out already.

So, I write this as a happy woman who apparently is too much of a chicken to shout from high places. And I encourage you to attend a talk-story session the next time you visit Kauai. You never know what might happen!

Kauai is a beautiful island filled with fun things to do for your whole family. And, because there is simply so much to celebrate, sometimes there are many events on the same day. So, for those of you who don’t want to attend the duckie races, I have a festival for you!

The Princess Ka’iulani Keiki Festival will also take place on the 15th of this month from 11am until 4pm in Hanapepe Town. This festival is hosted by the Storybook Theatre and is aimed toward children and families and should provide lots of entertainment and activities for your whole family. That’s right – it’s enough to keep even the most active child entertained.

First of all, this is an outdoor event, like so many events on Kauai. Why? Well, Kauai is a tropical island after all! The weather here is lovely and should be enjoyed as much as possible. And, because of this outdoor venue, we are able to do things that simply couldn’t be done inside.

This year’s Princess Ka’iulani Keiki Festival will include theatre productions, a parade, shopping at vendor booths, food booths, cultural displays, workshops, horseback rides, hula dancing, contests, games, and much more. There will even be celebrities on hand to read stories. Sound like fun? Well, then you will really love this part.

This event is free.

You can bring your entire family for a day of fun and not be charged for admission. Of course, it would be wise to have some money on hand anyway. After all, with this many food and craft booths all in one place, it would be hard not to indulge a bit.

Did you grow up watching Sesame Street? I know I did. I remember the puppets, the games, and especially the songs. One of my favorites was always Ernie singing to his rubber duckie. I loved it so much that I ask my mom for my own rubber duckie and wouldn’t take a bath without it.

So why do I reveal this embarrassing little piece of personal history? Well, because coming up on Saturday, October 15th, there is going to be an epic rubber duckie race at the Wailua River!

Why race rubber ducks? Because we can of course! This rubber duckie race is actually a fundraiser event for the Ho’omana Thrift Store to raise money for their ongoing programs to help teach job/life skills to young adults. Do you believe in our nation’s youth? Good. Do you like fun, family-friendly activities involving rubber ducks racing around while their owners eat vendor-sold food items? Excellent! Then this event is for you.

There are three categories of duckies up for purchasing, and you can participate for as little as $5. All you have to do is show up at the Wailua Bridge before 9am (when the race starts) and race those duckies!

This is a great event for families with young children, especially if you are willing to buy a duck or two in order to support the efforts of the Ho’omana Thrift Store. For more information, you can contact the store directly at 821-2818.

When you are looking for a vacation rental, what things are most important to you? Is it a large television? Close proximity to hiking trails or the beach? Enough bedrooms to sleep 6-8 people? Internet access?

Well, for me it is all of those things. I want to truly relax in comfort when I rent a home, no matter where I am. And if you are the same way, then you will love Hale Luana, a vacation rental home in Haena.

Hale Luana is a large vacation rental that is comfortable and right on the beach. That’s right – the backyard is literally the sandy shore of the ocean. In the front yard, there is a large plot of beautiful green grass where your family or friends can play touch football or throw frisbees. And there is a large patio/deck/lanai furnished with chairs and a table, so you can lounge in the sun while enjoying the scene.

On the inside, this three bedroom – two bath house is fully equipped for your needs. First of all, the basics of the house are all there. Both bathrooms have showers, so you can vacation with just your family or invite a second family along and each use a separate bathroom. The rest of the house is fully furnished with comfortable beds, teak and bamboo furniture, and enough space for a large group to be comfortable. The kitchen is also well stocked with appliances and a marble countertop.

Additional amenities that you might enjoy are the high speed internet access, cable TV with DVD/VCR/CD player, gas grill, and outdoor shower to rinse off after a beach adventure. This beautiful and spacious home sleeps eight and would be ideal for a large family or group of friends. Plus, at only $4,500 a week for all of that, you would be hard pressed to find a better deal on the island.

A wonderful event is taking place at Kukui Grove Center on October 8th – “The Walk to End Alzheimer’s.” If you have never had a friend or family member with this disease, I can tell you that it isn’t pleasant. While the affected individual isn’t in pain physically due to the disease, their mental status is severely affected, resulting in memory loss and other serious lapses in intellectual ability.

So what can we do about it? How about raising money for research designed to find the source of Alzheimer’s in the brain? With knowledge of the disease’s origins, how it develops, and how to fight it, we can successfully rid our world of this hated problem. So why not join us here on Kauai for The Walk to End Alzheimer’s and support the cause?

The walk will start at 8am at the Kukui Grove Center, which is located on the South-East side of the island in the town of Lihue. (For those who are planning to fly here, Lihue is also home to our main airport, so you should be acquainted with it already.) To get to the Kukui Grove Center, simply take HWY 50 to Nawiliwili Road and you will see the shopping center on your right.

Registration will open at 7am for all those interested in signing up, or you can visit their website to sign up, buy a t-shirt, join a team, or simply donate to the cause. So how about it? Do you feel like taking a stroll through our beautiful tropical island, supporting a good cause in the process? If you do, I hope to see you bright and early on October 8th.

Have you ever eaten a fresh coconut? The outer shell might be hard and fuzzy, but the interior is a fibrous meaty fruit that tastes wonderful and is good for you. Of course, not everything made with coconut needs to be good for you. For instance, coconut cream pies, macaroons, pina coladas, and many more yummy treats are made with coconut.

Do I love coconut? Yes I do. Do you love coconut? Well, if you do, then I have the festival for you!

On Kauai, one of my favorite festivals is the Coconut Festival, mostly because it gives me the opportunity to eat as much coconut as I want. Plus, there are fun activities and events for the whole family.

According to the website, this year there will be cooking demonstrations, games, painting, vendor tents, crafts, pie eating contests, a cooking contest, a petting zoo and inflatables. In other words, there will be several things to do for the whole family and a ton of coconut concoctions to try in the process.

The festival will take place today and tomorrow at Kapaa Beach Park, which is right off HWY 56 on the East side of the island (in Kapaa). Even for new visitors to the island, it should be easy to find. So if you like coconut and you are planning to visit the island today or tomorrow, please come and join us. I’ll be there most of the day tomorrow and would love to see some new and friendly faces.