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.
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.
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.
November 18 & 19
Kona Palisades Artists Open Studio Weekend take the self-guided tour to meet 8 Big Island artists at 3 locations within the Kona Palisades area. See the art displayed, demonstrations in the studios and buy directly from the artists. Look for the signs near Holoholo off Ka’iminani to start your tour or enter 73-4356 Holoholo St., Kailua-Kona. Call 808-345-1549.
31st Annual Volcano Village Art Studio Weekend meet the artists in their studios, and see artwork in a wide variety of media including hand blown art glass, wood & metal sculpture, pottery, jewelry and fiber art as well as paintings, prints, photography and more. 10am-4pm each day. Visit volcanovillageartistshui.com.
November 27-December 10
Kailua Kalikimaka 2017 festivities kick off on Friday, November 27 with a traditional lighting of the Village Christmas tree. Meet friends and family, and yes, bring the kids to Emma’s Square, across from Hulihee Palace, at 5:45 pm to begin the holiday season. Saturday, December 2 Dinner and Movie Night Decked out for the holidays, Historic Kailua Village will be particularly festive on with Dinner and a Movie Night at Kona Commons. Bring the entire family down for a jolly good time at 5pm and enjoy the showing of Moana, popcorn and Santa too. Don’t forget to bring your chairs, but no coolers please. Sunday, December 10 Free Hawaiian Holiday Concert. This award-winning live entertainment takes center stage at 5 pm for a free holiday concert under the monkeypod tree at Emma’s Square. Other activities include a lighted boat parade on December 10 at 6pm. Visit historickailuavillage.com.
December 1 & 2
Na Makua Invitational Christmas Craft Fair-Hilo features Hawai’i’s finest one-of-a-kind holiday gifts, live music and ono food. Free event. Friday 1pm-6pm, Saturday 9am-3pm at Ah Fook Civic Auditorium in Hilo. Call 808-966-4647.
Christmas With Chefs at King Kamehameha’s Kona Beach Hotel top Hawai’i chefs and confectioners will use primarily locally-sourced ingredients to prepare cuisine with a holiday twist – all accompanied by handcrafted ales, wines and 100 percent Kona coffee. Dancing under the stars with the Bill Noble Trio, fronting Kamakahonu Bay and a silent auction. Tickets are $90 presale, $95 at the door. 5:30pm-8:30pm. Call 808-329-2522.
December 2 & 10
Kailua Kalikimaka 2017 Saturday, December 2 Dinner and Movie Night Decked out for the holidays, Historic Kailua Village will be particularly festive on with Dinner and a Movie Night at Kona Commons. Bring the entire family down for a jolly good time at 5pm and enjoy the showing of Moana, popcorn and Santa too. Don’t forget to bring your chairs, but no coolers please. Sunday, December 10 Free Hawaiian Holiday Concert. This award-winning live entertainment takes center stage at 5 pm for a free holiday concert under the monkeypod tree at Emma’s Square. Other activities include a lighted boat parade on December 10 at 6pm. Visit historickailuavillage.com.
5th Annual Feast on the Beach celebrates under the stars on Anaehoomalu Bay. This popular holiday event will wow guests with delicious food stations, along with beer, wine, libations and its signature toes-in-the-sand ambiance. Recent Grammy museum inducted, Henry Kapono, will perform. AT Lava Lava Beach Club, 69-1081 Kuualii Pl., Waikoloa. Call 808-769-5282.
Kailua-Kona Community Christmas Parade begins at 5pm at Kailua’s Kekuaokalani Gym next to Kona Aquatic Center, go south on Kuakini, down Palani Rd., and along Ali’i Drive to Walua Road, just past Coconut Grove Marketplace. Visit paradesinkona.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.
Hula featuring Kumu hula Sammye Ku’ualoha Young with Halau Na Lei Hiwahiwa o Ku’ualoha perform in a one-of-a-kind outdoor setting at the kahua hula (platform) in Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park. 10:30am-11:30 am. This performance is rain or shine without electronic amplification. Audience members are encouraged to bring sun/rain gear and sitting mats. This free event. Call 808-967-8222.
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.
Waimea Valley’s Christmas Brunch & Free ‘Aha Mele Concert a family style brunch by North Shore catering company, Ke Nui Kitchen at 10am in the Pikake Pavilion. Reservations are highly recommended. Brunch adult is $49.95 and keiki 4-12 years old $24.95 (tax and gratuity included). Purchase of brunch includes admission into Waimea Valley day of only. ‘Aha Mele concert is free and open to public and features Hawaiian artists: Mailani, Paula Fuga, and Jerry Santos. 11am-2pm. Call 808-638-5000.
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.
2nd Annual Banyan Drive Art Stroll at venues along Lihiwai Street and Banyan Drive on the Waiakea peninsula in Hilo. Art and photography will be exhibited at area hotels. Plein art demonstrations will be in Lili`uokalani Gardens. Noon-6pm. Call 808-895-8130.
Kamuela Philharmonic presents Rustic Inspirations features the inspiring winners of Kamuela Philharmonic’s youth concerto competition. The program includes Dvorak’s American Suite in A major, op. 98; Copland’s Four Dance Episodes from Rodeo, and the Young Artist Winners. 4pm at Kahilu Theatre. $23-$43. Call 808-298-6274.
7th Annual Wiliwili Festival is a fun, free, educational event for all ages and a great opportunity to learn more about the unique environment of Hawai’i island. This year, guided tours of the Waikoloa Dry Forest Preserve, on-site workshops, educational talks, music, food, vendors, and a silent auction will be offered. Free event. Call 808-494-2208.
14th Annual Love The Arts uests will be treated to an evening of fine wine, brews, a luxurious gourmet buffet and spirited Hawaiian music. The live and silent auctions are not to be missed, with unique offerings including original artwork, hotel stays, tours, and jewelry. Tickets are $65. At Volcano Art Center Niaulani Campus, 19-4074 Old Volcano Rd., Volcano. Call 808-967-8222.
19th Annual Big Island International Marathon a beautiful race that follows “the coast of old Hawai‘i”. Run alongside historic roads with breathtaking views of the Pacific Ocean, scenic waterfalls, lush tropical forests and expansive sugarcane fields. Racers will have the refreshing morning drizzle of rain as they embark of the path to completing a Full Marathon, Half Marathon, 5k or 2 mile walk. Every athlete who completes the race will receive a finisher metal. 6am start. Visit hilomarathon.org.
Kamuela Philharmonic presents: Remarkable Flair violinist, Ignace “Iggy” Jang, joins the Kamuela Philharmonic Orchestra to close the season. The program will include Mozart’s Cosi Fan Tutte Overture; Elgar’s Salut d’Amour, op. 12; Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto in E min, op. 64; and Beethoven’s Symphony No. 8 in F maj, op. 93. 4pm at Tickets $23-$43. At Kahilu Theatre, 67-1186 Lindsey Rd., Kamuela. Visit kahilutheatre.org.