homepage logo

Ho‘oulu 2016 to benefit growing West Side Hawaiian Language Immersion Programs

By Staff | Sep 1, 2016

A Keiki Fun Zone will be available for all-day play at Ho‘oulu 2016. PHOTO BY BILL RATHFON.

LAHAINA – The community is invited to Ho’oulu 2016 on Saturday, Sept. 10, at Princess Nahi’ena’ena Elementary School.

Hosted by Na Leo Kalele, the second annual festival will feature a day of live entertainment, “ono-licious” food booths, keiki fun zone, arts and crafts and silent auction.

The event benefits the ever-growing, thriving West Side Hawaiian Language Immersion Programs (HLIP) at Ke Kula Kaiapuni ma Nahi’ena’ena (Elementary), Ke Kula Waena o Lahaina (Intermediate) and Ke Kula Kaiapuni o Lahainaluna (High School).

Na Leo Kalele nonprofit is the parent/community group supporting the growth of the immersion programs in Lahaina.

Rena Pali, the marketing director of the celebration, said, “The purpose of this event is to raise funds to help support na keiki in our West Maui Kaiapuni Programs; raise awareness of these unique programs available in Lahaina, contributing to program growth, and at the same time bringing our community members and ‘ohana together to enjoy the festivities.”

Gates open at 10 a.m. Entry donations for attendees ages six and older are $5 presale and $7 the day of the event. Keiki five years and under are free.

Entertainment Chairs Amy and Josh Kahula have assembled an exciting lineup, including Punana Leo o Lahaina, Na Kula Kaiapuni o Lahaina with Kapali Keahi, Maui Music Mission, ‘Ohana Groove, Matagi, The Old Lahaina Lu’au, ‘Uhane, Jarrett & Friends and Nuffsedd.

“Ho’oulu is a fun family event,” Pali added, “where you can bring your own chairs or hali’i (blanket) and maybe an umbrella or small pop-up for shade. You can shop, eat, sit, wala’au (talk story) and enjoy the festivities (sorry no outside food, drinks or coolers allowed).”

Tiara Ueki, the 2016 Ho’oulu coordinator, organized the list of participating arts and crafts and food booth vendors.

The culinary offerings will satisfy the most discerning local palette: Teppenyaki 2 Go, Kalei’s Lunchbox, Pascual’s Caf, Poi Malasadas, Wai Lemi, PTA Princess Nahi’ena’ena and Sugar bites.

Arts and crafts vendors include Kili Noe Designs; Kalai La’au, LLC; Emmie’s Macaroons; Sweet Impressions; Lala Sweets; 808 Fluff Co.; La Sirena Bella; Maui Wrap; Wai Life; Capture Maui; Tara B. Designs; 31 Bags; Lularoe; B3, a Beach Bunny Bakery; Mommy Droppers-Young Living Oils; Homemade Organics by Leilani; and Aloha Kettlecorn Co.

Information/logo booths, organized by Punahele Dapitan, will be staffed by representatives from Punana Leo o Lahaina, Maui Music Mission and Lahainaluna Boarding Department.

Like the 2015 celebration, a Keiki Fun Zone is available for all-day play. Charmaine Yamanda planned the activities, including three bouncy castles, one waterslide and games and prizes.

Fun zone entry wristbands are $15. Each game ticket is $1, both available for purchase at the event.

The eight-page list of silent auction items is impressive. Silent auction aficionados won’t want to miss this one.

It was compiled by Maile Gonzales and committee, with donations from our extremely generous Maui community, including gift certificates from local eateries and resorts, local art, ocean activities, gift baskets, massages, clothing, footwear, jewelry, greeting cards, carwash tickets, ribbon leis, quilts and lots more.

“Profits from Ho’oulu will help alleviate financial gaps that exceed the support from the schools. Funds will go towards cultural activities and excursions for na keiki, support for na kumu with classroom supplies/program needs, coordinate La ‘Ohana activities and other events throughout the year,” she said.

The public is invited to attend the event open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tickets are available from event Coordinator Ueki at 385-2782.

“This year is huge for Lahaina’s Hawaiian Language Immersion community,” Pali continued. “With the establishment of an ‘Aha Punana Leo Preschool Program, the expansion of Kaiapuni at Lahainaluna, as well as a new bus route created to accommodate Nahi’ena’ena students in the Kaiapuni program who live outside the school’s district, this enables us to truly grow our West Maui program the way we have envisioned for years.”

For more information, call Ueki or visit the Na Leo Kalele Facebook page.