Super ‘Ukulele Celebration
The 13th Annual Great Waikoloa ‘Ukulele Festival on Saturday, March 2, brought approximately one thousand fans of the little instrument with the big sound into Queens’ MarketPlace. Starting the annual festival was a free instructional class taught by noted teacher Roy Sakuma and his staff. Sakuma is the protégé of the world famous “Ohta-San” who also graced the stages with guitarist, Nando Suan. The fun day was filled with great Hawaiian music on two stages. Master of Ceremonies “Mr Aloha” Danny Kaleikini enchanted the crowd with ageless songs, and young ‘ukulele artists like Nick Acosta, Tamlyn Tamura, and You Tube star Aidan James, stole the show. One of the best highlights was when Nā Hōkū Hanohano Award winner Sean Na‘auao was joined by Auntie Aulani Young and her ohana for beautiful, impromptu hula with the band.
If you missed the ‘Ukulele Festival, you can still enjoy wonderful hula and Hawaiian music when you visit Waikoloa Beach Resort. Queens’ MarketPlace showcases three different hālau (troupes) three nights a week at the Coronation Pavilion, plus monthly “mini concerts” with some of the Big Island’s favorite entertainers, all complimentary. Kings’ Shops hosts free weekly performances on Center Stage, including slack-key master John Keawe, the big-band stylings of Kahulanui, folk artist Rob Decker, and keiki (children’s) hula on Aloha Friday. And, don’t forget our newest member of the family, Lava Lava Beach Club at ‘Anaeho’omalu Bay, with live Hawaiian music and hula every night!