With some help from our friends at the Maui Visitor’s Bureau, we’re listing the top festivals and events for Maui Nui – Maui, Lanai and Molokai. As you can see, there are plenty of excellent celebrations and events throughout the year.
Hyundai Tournament of Champions
PGA Tour champions from the previous year compete in this televised, season opening, golf tournament at Kapalua Resort’s stunning Plantation Course for a $5,600,000 purse. www.pgatour.com/hyundai This event is usually scheduled for the first full weekend in January after New Year’s Day.
Great Maui Whale Festival
This celebration honoring humpback whales features special events and eco-activities all month, including The Great Whale Count, sponsored by the Pacific Whale Foundation. The Parade of Whales and Whale Day Celebration offer live entertainment, a craft fair and food booths at Kalama Park, Kīhei. www.mauiwhalefestival.org. In 2012, World Whale Day is scheduled for February 18.
Haʻīkū Hoʻolaulea & Flower Festival
This event celebrates rural life and benefits local youth education programs. Enjoy lei making demonstrations, a floral design contest, bake sale, arts and crafts show, farmers’ market, historical displays, games and live entertainment. In 2012, this event is slated for March 31.
Celebration of the Arts
This annual event pays tribute to the people, arts and traditions of Hawaiʻi, hosted by The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua. Enjoy hula performances, workshops in Hawaiian cultural topics and crafts. A Hawaiian lūʻau with traditional foods, music and hula highlight Easter weekend. www.celebrationofthearts.org 2012 dates TBA.
Annual East Maui Taro Festival
Hāna’s annual cultural event celebrates Hawaiʻi’s traditional food staple with an all-day festival featuring live music, hula, arts and crafts, Hawaiian games and food booths, plus a taro pancake breakfast. www.tarofestival.org In 2012, this event will be held April 21.
The Fairmont Kea Lani Maui May Day Celebration
Held at The Fairmont Kea Lani in Wailea, this event features floral, feather, seed and kukui nut lei displays as well as Hawaiian entertainment. www.fairmont.com/kealani Lei Day is always on May 1.
Annual Maui Onion Festival
Kāʻanapali pays tribute to the Maui Onion, known worldwide for its sweet, mild flavor. Enjoy a farmers’ market, chefs cooking demos, professional recipe competition, Maui onion-eating contests for adults and kids, and lots of food and music at Whalers Village. www.whalersvillage.com/onionfestival.htm In 2012, the festivities will culminate on May 5.
Molokai’s Ka Hula Piko Festival
Celebrate the birth of hula, Hawaiʻi’s traditional dance, with chant and lectures based on an annual cultural theme. Experience entertainment, food and crafts by the people of Molokaʻi. The festival is held at Pāpōhaku Beach Park in Kaluakoʻi, Molokaʻi. www.molokaievents.com In 2012, this event is planned for May 3 – 5.
Maui Film Festival at Wailea
Hawaiian culture meets the big screen at this annual film festival in Wailea. Film premieres are set-up outdoors at Wailea Golf Club’s driving range and indoors at the Maui Arts & Cultural Center in Kahului. www.mauifilmfestival.com In 2012, this event is scheduled for June 13 – 17.
Kapalua Wine & Food Festival
World-renowned winemakers and Hawaiʻi’s hottest chefs are showcased throughout Kapalua Resort.
Attend seminars on wine, culinary trends and gourmet dinners, including The Grand Tasting and
Seafood Festival. www.kapalua.com 2012 dates TBA.
4th of July Fireworks
Lahaina Town puts on an Independence Day celebration including food, entertainment and a great fireworks display.
Makawao Rodeo & Paniolo Parade
Over the fourth of July weekend, watch competitors ride and rope for top prizes; enjoy country music and dancing. The Paniolo Parade opens the event along Baldwin Avenue in Makawao. www.visitmaui.com
Annual Lānaʻi Pineapple Festival
Lānaʻi honors the pineapple plantation days with an all-day celebration. Enjoy live entertainment, local food and crafts, pineapple eating and cooking contests at Dole Park on Lānaʻi. www.lanaipineapplefestival.com 2012 date TBA.
Maui Marathon & Half Marathon
This racecourse from Kahului to Kāʻanapali is recognized as one of the 10 most scenic marathons in the USA. Fitness Expo, Carbo Luau, Front Street Mile and 5K Fun Run/Walk precede over the weekend in Kāʻanapali. www.mauimarathonhawaii.com This event is scheduled September 16 in 2012.
Maui County Fair
Enjoy carnival games, rides, entertainment, local food, arts and crafts, a parade, exhibits and orchid
display. www.mauifair.com In 2012, this event will be held September 27 – 30.
Annual XTERRA World Championship
The premier off-road, extreme multi-sport competition hosted on Maui features an ocean swim, mountain bike ride and off-road trail run. It attracts an international field of the world’s finest triathletes to Kapalua Resort on Sunday. The XTERRA Kapalua 5K/10K Trail Runs, open to all, kicks off competition on Saturday. www.xterraplanet.com In 2012, this event is scheduled for October 28.
Annual Hula o Nā Keiki
Maui’s only children’s solo hula and chant competition is hosted at the Kāʻanapali Beach Hotel. The weekend features workshops on chant and hula, arts and crafts displays, delicious local food and live entertainment. www.hawaiiculture.com In 2012, this event is scheduled for November 9 – 11.
Maui Invitational Basketball Tournament
Hawaiʻi’s Chaminade University hosts NCAA-sanctioned top college teams in this exciting, annual, pre-season tournament at the Lāhainā Civic Center. www.mauiinvitational.com In 2012, this event is scheduled for November 19 – 21.
Nā Mele o Maui
A sensational showcase of Hawaiʻi’s language, music and art through the talents of Maui Nui youth. Maui County students from kindergarten through 12th grade sing songs in the Hawaiian language in competition. High school students exhibit original juried artwork with Hawaiian theme. www.kaanapaliresort.com 2012 date TBA.
Holiday Lighting of the Banyan Tree
Lāhainā’s landmark Banyan Tree lights up for the holiday season while choirs sing carols. Enjoy holiday arts and crafts in the park, a real Snow Zone and entertainment. This event is normally held on the first weekend in December. In 2012, it will be on December 1 and 2. www.visitlahaina.com
If your vacation doesn’t coincide with events from the above list, chances are there’s something going on. To check for special events in Maui Nui, click on the appropriate island link:
On the right side, find the Vacation Directory box. Then, click on the Events tab. Enter your desired dates and press go for results.