It’s All for a Good Cause
If you love Hawaiian music, mark your calendars for April 8th. That’s when one of the largest and most beloved annual events on the Hamakua Coast will take place at Laupahoehoe Point Beach Park. Now in its 13th year, the Laupahoehoe Music Festival draws residents and visitors from around the island to listen to great Hawaiian music. And it is all for a good cause! The music festival serves as a fundraiser for local school children and Kupuna (seniors) in the community.
Photography by Susan Anderson
A Fun Family Event
Laupahoehoe Music Festival is a fun family event featuring a mixture of Hawaiian slack key musicians, performances by hula halau, and more. It is truly a homegrown local gathering that over the years has featured some of the most talented musicians in Hawaii. The lineup this year includes Ho’aikane, Laupahoehoe Ukulele Band – led by Todd Otake, Komakakino – Hawaiian and Hula, Monster Zero – Classic Rock, Dagan – Country Folk, and Ira Varize – Slack Key.
Performers at Laupahoehoe Music Festival – Photography by Susan Anderson
Plus, there’s fun for the keiki (kids), including carnival style games, face painting, a photo booth and craft booths with locally made products. And of course there is always lots of onolicious local food! Kalua, Pork & Peas, Pasteles, Thai food, Bradda Pops, Smoothies, Cookies, AnyKine Wontons and a pizza food truck. Festivities also include a silent auction, which benefits the Laupahoehoe Community Public Charter School.
Event Vendors and Onolicious Food – Photography by Susan Anderson
Origin of this Community Fundraising Event
The origins of the music festival date back to 2005, when a small group of dedicated volunteers, including the late Hawaiian music legend Braddah Smitty, got together to help the community. Over the years the festival has raised more than $35,000 in scholarships for children in and around Laupahoehoe, including the students of Laupahoehoe Community Public Charter School. Funds raised through the music festival have also gone a long way in helping area seniors too. For instance, proceeds from the music festival have purchased a new refrigerator, stove, and fans for the Laupahoehoe Community Center, where the seniors meet every Friday.
Braddah Smitty brings the community together – Photography by Susan Anderson
Beautiful Venue at Laupahoehoe Point Beach Park
If past festivals are any indication, organizers expect upwards of 800 people at this year’s festival. Coolers are not allowed, but be sure to bring a blanket or lawn chairs and an umbrella – prepared for sun or rain. (It is the Hamakua Coast, after all!)
Laupahoehoe Point Beach Park – Photography by Susan Anderson
Get Your Tickets Now & I’ll See You There!
Pre-sale tickets are $15, tickets at the gate $20, children ages 10 and under are free. Tickets can be purchased at Basically Books in Hilo, Hilo Music Exchange, Hilo Guitars, and M. Sakado Store in Laupahoehoe. For more information or to purchase tickets online, go to LaupahoehoeMusicFestival.org.