Homegrown Windward fest caters to near, far
By Wayne Harada
Advertiser Entertainment Writer
By Wayne Harada
By Windward. For Windward. But not restricted to Windward.
That's the scope of Saturday's "A Homegrown Celebration," the 6th annual Windward Ho'olaule'a, at Windward Community College in Kane'ohe.
"Initially, we started the ho'olaule'a to showcase Windward Community College and give small businesses and crafters a chance to showcase their wares," said Janis Chun, co-chairwoman of the event. "That's how it evolved."
Folks on the other parts of the island are invited, of course. But the festival usually draws on Windward folk.
Take the roster of participating talent involved in a Hawai'i Music Institute workshop. The 'ukulele wizards include Eddie Kamae, Melveen Leed, Benny Chong, Gordon Mark and Noenoe Zuttermeister — most have Windward ties, either as residents or as affiliates of the WCC campus, Chun said. Or the day's two emcees — Tiny Tadani in the morning, Lina Girl Langi in the evening; both are WCC alumni.
Throngs of 20,000 are expected. They will find family-oriented festivities linked to Hawaiian culture, with demos of woodcarving, poi-pounding, canoe-building and plant identification.
There's early Christmas shopping, too: more than 100 artisans will staff craft booths, double from a couple of years ago.
"We'll have games (for the keiki) and lots of exhibits," said Chun, a real-estate woman by trade but a volunteer of the Kane'ohe Business Group, one of the co-sponsors and community organizations that annually provide kokua and manpower to WCC.
The activities run the gamut, from raku demos where you can glaze and fire your own creation, to science displays; from gyotaku (fish printing) to a sudoku challenge; from a used-book sale to a white-elephant sale; from a bonsai exhibit to live music.
The WCC's high-tech Imaginarium show, "Flights of Fancy," will be offered at 10:30, 11 and 11:30 a.m. and noon; cost is $2. Another spectacle, "The Search for Life in the Universe," will be offered at 4 p.m. ($5 adults, $3 children, $4 UH students, military or those older than 65).
Community organizations — Kane'ohe Rotarians, Kane'ohe Lions Club, even West Honolulu Rotarians — are also on the bandwagon, Chun said.
"We ask for feedback every year, so we try to readjust and accommodate for the following year," she said. "We must be doing something right."
Reach Wayne Harada at email@example.com.