Big Island Upcoming Events
In our first edition of Hawaii The Big Island Revealed, we listed a calendar of local events for the island. It was a colossal waste of time! Things change so often in Hawai‘i that we couldn’t keep it current. The Web fixes that. Don’t get me wrong. Some of the events listed below will not occur or will change time or place. That’s because decisions about these things are made quite capriciously in the islands, often the day of the event. We’ll change this page daily if we have to, but you can’t bet your life on the timeliness of these events. Nonetheless, if you’re interested in attending a local event, these might be worth checking into.
Volcano Art Center at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park offers new exhibits and programs each month. Call the Center at 808-967-8222 for the current schedule or visit volcanoartcenter.org.
Free 5K Run & Walk meet up at Big Island Running Company on Alii Drive in Kailua-Kona for this fun, free, non-competitive fun run. Visitors, residents, children, anyone and everyone are invited to join the community camaraderie and help promote active, healthy lifestyles. 5pm. Call 808-327-9333.
First Tuesday of the Month
Kona Historical Society: Special Bakes at its stone oven, located below the Kealakekua office. From 10am-12:30pm, the public is invited to watch the baking process. Loaves are $8, sold on a first-come, first-served basis, starting at about 12:30pm at 81-6551 Mamalahoa Hwy. Call 808-323-3222.
First Tuesday of the Month
Kona Stories Local Author Nights from 6pm-8pm local authors present their newly published books followed by an informal author signing and talk story. The book store puts down an amazing pupu (appetizer) spread and offers a free glass of wine. At Kona Stories bookstore in the Keauhou Shopping Center. Call 808-324-0350 or visit konastories.com.
After Dark in the Park at 7pm, Hawaii Volcanoes National Park Visitor Center Auditorium. Weekly lecture series. Call 808-985-6000 for information, to confirm dates and reservations.
Tuesdays through Saturdays
Experience the world’s first 3D planetarium “Skies Above Hawai‘i” at ‘Imiloa Astronomy Center at noon. “Fly out” from Earth as the planetarium operator guides the audience through various regions and structures of the Universe, based on data from the telescopes located on Maunakea. Visitors to the center can enjoy other planetarium selections as well: the 1pm showing of Maunakea: Between Earth and Sky, and other shows throughout the day. Call 808-932-8901 or visit imiloahawaii.org.
Kanikapila Jam Sessions are open to all musicians. Bring your instrument and enjoy “garage style” jamming with your neighbors and community. At Volcano Art Center, Niaulani Campus, 19-4074 Old Volcano Road. Donations appreciated. Call 808-967-8222.
Every First Saturday
Mauna Kea Visitor’s Information Station, monthly program to discuss recent observations and discoveries, 6pm, with stargazing. Limited seating, 808-961-2180.
Saturdays Closest to the Full Moon
Twilight at Kalahuipuaa or Talk Story as the locals call it, is a monthly gathering of kama‘aina and tourists alike that celebrates the tradition of storytelling through music, dance and spoken word. The Eva Woods Parker Cottage is a small hale (house) situated on land between the Kalahuipuaa Fishponds and the Pacific Ocean at the Mauna Lani Bay Hotel & Bungalows. Bring beach chairs, blankets, picnic baskets and settle in for 3 hours of entertainment. Free event. Call 808-885-6622 ext. 7065.
Second Saturday of the Month
Night Market @ The Point a wide range of Hawaiian-local food along with local crafts and clothing and live music. Family friendly and alcohol, drug and tobacco-free. 5pm-9pm at Connect Point Church, 168 Holomua St., Hilo. Call 808-961-5651.
Saturdays & Sundays
Mauna Kea Visitor’s Information Station offers free summit tours starting at 1pm. All participants in the Summit Tour must have their own 4-wheel drive transportation to the summit. Participants must be at least 16 yrs of age, not pregnant and in good health. Check their web site for other information and requirements: Visitor Information Station website.
One Sunday per Month
Kokua Kailua one Sunday each month Alii Drive in Historic Kailua Village becomes a festive pedestrian-only marketplace. Vendors, craftspeople and merchants. Free Hawaiian entertainment, 4pm at Hulihee Palace. For a schedule of dates visit historickailuavillage.com.
Kona Coffee Living History Farm’s Annual Farm Fest honors Kona’s historical, agricultural and coffee heritage. There will be “Hands on History” activities that visitors can participate in like tofu making, pickling, pan-roasting coffee and medicinal gardening. The farm’s traditional chicken hekka lunch will also be available along with community vendors, an historical photo exhibit; tours of the 1920’s farmhouse and coffee mill and more. 10am-2pm at 82-6199 Mamalahoa Hwy, Captain Cook. Call 808-323-3222.
Chef Fest a multi-day food and wine event featuring high-profile dinners, interactive cooking classes and culinary experiences. The series of events showcases some of the country’s best culinary and mixology talent in an intimate beachfront setting. All events are exclusive to Resort guests at Four Seasons Resort Hualalai. Visit cheffesthualalai.com.
5th Annual Yoga Festival will feature more than 60 sessions presented by a diverse faculty from Hawaii and around the world, including yoga teacher, writer and body-positivity advocate Jessamyn Stanley. Attendees will also be invited to enjoy Hawaiian cultural events, live music performances, permaculture tours, fresh-prepared meals. At Kalani Retreat, 12-6860 Kalapana-kapoho Rd., Pahoa. Visit hawaiiyogafestival.com.
An Evening of Aloha Na Hoku Hanohano Award winners, Willy K, Mark Yamanaka and Brickwood Galuteria will provide an night of music. Enjoy prime rib dinner buffet and no host cocktails. All proceeds earned will go towards upkeeping the Pacific Tsunami Museum. 5:30pm at the Gran Naniloa Hotel in Hilo. Call 808-935-0926.
19th Annual Taste of Hilo features the culinary skills of more than 35 chefs, restaurants, and patisseries, who provide their talents, ingredients and staff to make this annual event a success. Presale ticket are $55 / tickets at door (if available) are $70. 1pm-3pm at Sangha Hall, 398 Kilauea Ave., Hilo. Call 808-934-0177.
30th Anniversary Kailua Village Artists Gallery Celebration with an all-member celebration at the gallery in Kona Marketplace with music, pupus and a reception. Open to everyone. 5pm-7pm at 75-5729 Alii Dr., Suite C-110, Kailua-Kona. Call 808-329-6653.
HFWF Return of Cuisines of the Sun culinary talent from around the world joining forces to celebrate the food and wine of sunny climates with a a spectacular six-course dinner at the Waikoloa Beach Marriott Resort. 6pm-9:30pm. Visit HFWF.me.
47th Annual Kona Coffee Cultural Festival hosts more than 40 events over 10 days that are wide-ranging and showcase nearly 200 years of culture behind Kona Coffee. Visit konacoffeefest.com.
Reebok Rangar Hawaii make no mistake, you’ll have plenty of hills (volcanoes) to climb, but the views will make it all worth it. Both exchange 18 and the finish line are located at the majestic Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel. Pre-race Party to enjoy drinks, Hawaiian food, and live music at Waikoloa Beach Marriott Resort & Spa. Come for the challenge of running through seven of the world’s climates in 200 miles and conquering more elevation than any other Ragnar course. Visit runragnar.com.
Hawaii Steel Festival at Mana Lani features performances by steel guitar masters. Presented free to the public. 4:30pm-8:30pm at Mauna Lani Bay Hotel. Visit hawaiisteelguitarfestival.com.
December 15 & 16
25th Annual Big Island Christmas Art, Crafts & Food Fair will feature many unique arts and crafts, textiles, jewelry, woodwork, bath products, essential oils, Tahitian pearls, Polynesian and Hawaiian inspired women, men children and baby clothing and accessories, holiday wreaths, centerpieces and ornaments, edibles for your gift baskets, food and many gift products. 4pm-9pm Friday, 9am-4pm Saturday. Free parking at Edith Kanakaole Stadium, 350 Kalanikoa St., Hilo. Call 808-981-0518.
13th Annual Jungle Bell Beach Run at 5K event. Start time is at 7:30am – sharp at Coconut Grove Marketplace. Includes children’s “Santa’s Dash”. The featured 5k event encourages participation from all fitness levels and running backgrounds. Great fun for everyone, family oriented—a perfect addition to your holiday celebrations. Visit kona5k.com.
Nutcracker Ballet is a delightful holiday classic is performed at Kahilu Theatre. Thursday, Friday at 6pm, Saturday at 2pm at 67-1186 Lindsey Rd., Kamuela. Visit whdt.org.
20th Annual Mochi Pounding everyone takes their turn at pounding the glutinous sticky rice for good luck. Fire building starts at 7am to steam the rice. Hearty local style lunches will be available for $5. New years crafts, food vendors, fortune telling, massage, I Ching readings, floral arrangements, plantation stories, Okinawan taiko drumming, Hawaiian entertainment and more. 8am-2pm Akiko’s Buddhist B&B, Hakalau. Free to the public. Call 808-963-6422.
Waimea Ocean Film Festival offers a stunning lineup of films, special guests, intimate coffee talks, Q&As, exhibits, receptions and morning activities, running non-stop at various locations around the island. Visit waimeaoceanfilm.org.