The new year brings lots of fun as Hawaii Prepares For It’s January 2013 Events. It’s as if the whales, and the winter season, have decided to parrtay. All of the below events are in addition to the stellar weather and ongoing weekly events in all the small towns across the Hawaiian Islands. Are you thinking about your Seattle to Hawaii vacation yet? Here’s an island specific list with a short explanation for each event.
Jan. 7-13: Sony Open in Hawaii. This the first full field event of the PGA season. Maybe you can be on TV as this event is broadcast nationally. The tournament is held at the Waialae Country Club, which is set in the Kahala district of Oahu. As is always the case with PGA tournaments, all proceeds benefit local Hawaiian charities.
Jan. 27: Pro Bowl. For all those people that can’t get enough football, the AFC-NFC Pro Bowl at Honolulu’s Aloha Stadium should satisfy…..plus it’s warm…no wonder all the players work hard to make this game.
Jan. 3-11: Waimea Ocean Film Festival. For the film buff, this is one of the newer film festivals out there. As is always the case with a lot of the smaller festival, you can get up close to the film makers and stars by attending panel discussion and breakfast talks, in addition to other bonus activities. Held up north in Waimea and also in the Kohala district, festival passes can be purchased online. www.waimeaoceanfilm.org
Jan. 18-20: Mitsubishi Electric Championship at Hualalai. This one is right up my alley, with the former stars of the PGA tour moving onto their own Champions Tour. This event draws an elite field of the top 40 senior golfers, and you will find that interacting with these guys is a lot easier than on the regular tour.Now in its 15th year, the event takes place at Hualalai Golf Course. www.hualalairesort.com
Jan. 4: Hanapepe Art Night. You have got to experience Hanapepe’s art night at least once when you are on the Kauai. The good thing about this every Friday event is that all the gallery owner take turns hosting workshops, demonstrations, and original performances by the artists that are so cherished in Hawaii. Everybody in town joins the party with all the shops decorating and lighting up the main street. Come enjoy all there is to offer with live music and great food too. www.hanapepe.org
Jan. 7: Waimea Historic Walking Tour. I always try to let my clients in on a great cultural event when they are on their Hawaii vacation. Well, how about a free 2 hour walking tour of one of Hawaii’s most historic towns. Waimea is a town that literally grew and evolved from the great kings of Kauai. The guides on this tour will explain it’s roots, the changes in it’s agriculture from taro to rice, and finally corn and coffee. They will also explain the influences of the Kings, missionaries, and other famous residents. Tours depart Mondays at 9:30 a.m. from the West Kauai Visitor Center. www.wkbpa.org
Jan. 3-7: Hyundai Tournament of Champions. Here’s the elite event held for 2012 tournament winners only, that starts the PGA tour off on the right foot every year. As a favorite course of mine, this is a great venue with scores that can be low one day, and then be close to par the next. This is primarily due to the wind blowing just a little harder some days. Last year saw Steve Stricker win this opening tourney to continue a great comeback for him that started earlier in 2012. Let’s hope that we have another great tourney. I suggest if you can’t be there, watch it for the great scenery that is standard for the Plantation Course at Kapalua. www.pgatour.com/hyundai
Jan. 2: Masters of Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar. This weekly event is becoming a must for anyone who loves Hawaiian music in a great casual setting. On Wednesday’s, at the Napili Kai Beach Resort Pavilion, entertainer George Kahumoku Jr. puts on a show with well known Hawaii performers. January’s guests include Da Ukulele Boyz, Ledward Kaapana, Keoki Kahumoku, Jeff Peterson, Nathan Aweau and Brother Noland. Check out who is on tap for your Wednesday at www.slackkey.com. I also suggest you check out the sunset at The Sea House Restaurant.
Jan. 20: Maui Pops. For those that love Broadway shows, you can head on over to The Maui Arts & Cultural Center in Lihue. This tribute show, featuring Gary Mauer and Elizabeth Southard, will present a collection of songs from hit shows such as “Les Miserables,” “Show Boat,” “West Side Story” and “Chicago.” For tickets and more info, go to their website www.mauiarts.org.
I know that a lot of you wonder whether you can participate in any of these events considering it’s so close. The good thing about the addition of all the extra flights by the airlines last year is that the availability is there for those last minute trips. I won’t say you will find the cheapest deals of the year, but sometimes we just need to get out of the rain. With all the above events, there could be just one reason listed for you to head out for that Seattle to Hawaii vacation.
A hui ho…and Mele Kalikimaka…
Seattle to Hawaii Vacation Consultant