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Holiday festival slated in Banyan Tree Park

By Staff | Dec 3, 2009

LAHAINA — On Saturday, Dec. 5, LahainaTown Action Committee will again bring snow to our tropical landscape for the annual Holiday Lighting of the Banyan Tree & Snow Festival.

The event will run from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturday, and continue on Sunday, Dec. 6, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. with a holiday arts and craft fair.

For Saturday’s festivities, several tons of snow (being produced by Valley Isle Seafood) will brought to Lahaina in a refrigerated truck.

There will also be a six-foot-tall, Hawaiian-style snowman at the festival. Bring your cameras to take photos of family and friends with the popular snowman donated by Lahaina Ice Company.

Keiki ages 2-12 will be able to enter the Snow Zone to frolic and delight in a tropical winter wonderland.

The Snow Zone will be open from 3 to 6 p.m. Admission is a canned or boxed food donation for the Light Bringers to help feed the less fortunate in West Maui.

At 6:30 p.m., Lahaina’s historic landmark tree will be lit with thousands of colored lights in its annual tradition. Simultaneously around Banyan Tree Park, The Wharf Cinema Center and Pioneer Inn will light their complexes with Christmas lights for a full-color display in the heart of town.

The holiday lights will remain on each evening through Jan. 1.

The whole family will enjoy entertainment on stage throughout the day. Musical groups from the community will lead the countdown to the lighting ceremony.

Santa Claus will make an appearance to entertain keiki, courtesy of The Wharf Cinema Center.

Festival-goers should plan to arrive early at Banyan Tree Park on Saturday to experience other fun activities, along with a holiday crafts fair by Maui artisans and designers from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

There will be many gift possibilities, just in time for holiday shopping.

Kids won’t want to miss the ”Let’s Do Art Keiki” artist mentor workshops with Lahaina Arts Society between 3 and 5 p.m.

The popular Children’s Cookie Decorating Workshop will be featured from 2 to 4 p.m., courtesy of the Bakery and LahainaTown Action Committee.

This year, for the first time, The Wharf Cinema Center will feature “Ichabod presents A Christmas Carol.” Journey through time with Ebenezer Scrooge and the ghosts of Christmas past, present and future as they humble the tycoon’s heart and soul. 

The house opens at 1 p.m. on Dec. 5. The entrance fee is $5, with a special rate of $4 for senior citizens age 65 and older.

At 5:30 p.m., The Wharf Cinema Center will present the Sacred Hearts Children’s Choir led by Lori Ulman on center stage. 

After the lighting of the Banyan Tree at The Wharf’s center stage, the angelic voices of the Lahaina Baptist Church Choir will fill the air with a beautiful Christmas cantata. 

At 7:30 p.m., the sounds of Ron Hetteen will culminate the evening with Christmas tunes and contemporary Hawaiian music. Admission is free. The Wharf Shops and Restaurants are located at 658 Front St., across from the Banyan Tree. Call 661-8748 for more information.

The festival is made possible with support from the Pioneer Inn, The Wharf Cinema Center, The Bakery, Valley Isle Seafood and Lahaina Inn-Realtor Toni Johnson. Call 667-9193 for information.