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LahainaTown Action Committee to host 19th annual Lighting of the Banyan Tree

By Staff | Dec 1, 2016

The Lahainaluna High School Band will perform during the actual lighting of the tree on Saturday at 6:30 p.m. Events for the 19th annual Lighting of the Banyan Tree will be held from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturday and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday. All are welcome; admission is free.

LAHAINA – LahainaTown Action Committee will host the 19th annual Lighting of the Banyan Tree in downtown Lahaina on Saturday, Dec. 3, and Sunday, Dec. 4. Sixty-four lampposts on Front Street are also decorated with Christmas wreaths.

One of the most famous landmarks in Lahaina, the Banyan Tree was planted in 1873 by Sheriff William Smith to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the arrival of the first missionaries to Lahaina. The tree was brought from India and was only eight feet tall at the time of planting. It now has a dozen main trunks and spreads over the better part of an acre.

As keeping with tradition, on Saturday, Lahaina’s historic Banyan Tree will be lit at 6:30 p.m. by William “Butch” Soares. Born and raised in Lahaina, Soares is the immediate past chairman of the Maui County Fire and Safety Commission, past chair and commissioner of the Maui County Police Commission, and currently serves on the Finance Committee for Maria Lanakila Church. He has spent many years in community service giving back to the island he so loves.

The tree will be lit with 6,500 Christmas lights. Some 800 Lahaina residents and guests are expected to attend. The Banyan Tree will be lit for the entire holiday season, from Dec. 3 to Jan. 1, 2017.

Keiki activities will kick off at 2 p.m. with the arrival of Santa at the North Pole sponsored by 5A Rent A Space. Other activities include cookie decorating sponsored by Honolulu Cookie Company, face painting and Christmas crafts.

LahainaTown Action Committee requests one canned or nonperishable food item for admission to the North Pole winter wonderland.

Join in the fun with this Lahaina island-style event with a holiday arts and crafts fair along with a variety of local musicians. Music begins at 9 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday.

For more information, contact Lynn Donovan at lynn@visitlahaina.com or call 667-9175.