If you are going to be taking a Hawaii vacation to Oahu on the weekend of March 13 and 14th you’re in for a real treat of a lifetime. The 16th Annual Honolulu Festival will be taking place in Waikiki and the best part is that it’s totally FREE. The festival will give you the opportunity to personally interact with many cultures from all over the Pacific rim. Under the banner of “Pacific Harmony” the festival’s theme is “discovery through tradition” and will be highlighted by cultural exhibits and performing groups representing Japan China, Taiwan, Korea, the Philippines, Australia, Canada, Alaska, and Hawaii. There will be a wide variety of entertainment with over 120 performers in four locations in the Waikiki area; Hawaii Convention Center, Ala Moana Center, Waikiki Beach walk and Waikiki shopping Plaza.

The Honolulu Festival began in 2000 and it’s primary objective is to provide the event to the citizens of Hawaii and to visitors at no cost to the public. The festival provides a unique opportunity for visitors and residents of Hawaii from all over the world to experience the cultural practices and traditional art forms of Japan and other Pacific Rim countries. The foundation believes that these kinds of events contributed to perpetuating the cultures, customs and traditions of Asian Pacific islanders.

This year at the Hawaii Convention Center will feature an expanded array of cultural offerings highlighting arts, crafts, exhibits and foods. You’ll find the Anime Corner featuring “Kawaii Con” members from Hawaii and, by popular demand, the return of the “Maid Cafe,“ a fantasy game which puts maid’s and Butler’s at your disposal. The Anime Corner will also be highlighted by the appearance of Japanese TV star Momoi Halko. You’ll also probably want to check out the special movie showings; the critically acclaimed Japanese films “Hula Girls” and “Departures” will be shown Saturday, March 13. If food is your pleasure you definitely want to check out the friendship Gala which takes place on March 13 and will feature a dozen of Hawaii’s most celebrated restaurants.

Arguably one of the best parts of the entire festival is the grand Parade down Kalakaua Avenue. This spectacular event begins at 430 PM in Waikiki and runs along Kalakaua Avenue. The parade features music and magnificent floats especially the popular Daijayama, or fire-breathing dragon.

For more information call the Festival Hotline at 808-596-3327.

Scheduled Events:

Mar. 13 (Sat), 2010
Performances
Craft Fair
Ennichi Corner
Anime Corner
Maui Mikoshi

Performances
10:00am – 5:00pm
Venue:Hawaii Convention Center, Ala Moana Shopping Center, Waikiki Beach Walk, Waikiki Shopping Plaza

Craft Fair
10:00am – 5:00pm
Venue:Hawaii Convention Center

Ennichi Corner
10:00am – 5:00pm
Venue:Hawaii Convention Center

Anime Corner
10:00am – 5:00pm
Venue:Hawaii Convention Center

Maui Mikoshi Unveiling Ceremony
11:00am –
Venue:Hawaii Convention Center

The Maui mikoshi contest was developed exclusively for Maui high school students. Each year there is a competition among Maui high schools to design a mikoshi for the Honolulu Festival. Mikoshi are decorative floats that are unique to specific prefectures in Japan. They are carried by troops of celebrants during their festivals. The winning Maui mikoshi is unveiled and displayed at the Hawaii Convention Center over the Festival weekend. Students of the high school selected as the overall winner visit Honolulu during the weekend of the festival and march in the Grand Parade showcasing their award winning mikoshi.

Friendship Gala 
Friendship Gala 7:00pm – 9:00pm
Venue:Hawaii Convention Center

Come and enjoy the delicious dishes of Hawaii’s famous restaurants. The Friendship Gala promotes friendship, understanding and international goodwill between the people of Hawaii and other Pacific Rim countries. Attendees are offered a unique insight into the cultures of the Pacific through dance, song and regional cuisine by some of Hawaii’s most famous chefs.

Mar. 14 (Sun), 2010
Performances
Craft Fair
Ennichi Corner
Anime Corner
Grand Parade

Performances
Venue:Hawaii Convention Center, Ala Moana Shopping Center, Waikiki Beach Walk, Waikiki Shopping Plaza
10:00am – 3:00pm

Craft Fair
Venue:Hawaii Convention Center
10:00am – 3:00pm

Ennichi Corner
10:00am – 3:00pm
Venue:Hawaii Convention Center

Anime Corner
10:00am – 3:00pm
Venue:Hawaii Convention Center

Grand Parade
4:30pm – 8:00pm
Venue:Kalakaua Avenue/Waikiki

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