The 2013 festival will feature nearly forty events (many free) including contests, tastings, a scholarship pageant, farm tours, coffee workshops, art exhibits, an outdoor concert and more.
The award-winning Kona Coffee Cultural Festival is recognized as the oldest and most successful food festival in Hawaii. The 10-day Festival celebrates Kona's special cultural heritage and recognizes the accomplishments of Kona coffee pioneers, farmers and artisans.
Main attractions include judging the finest Kona coffee in the state at the Kona Coffee Cultural Festival Cupping Competition. A panel of international judges conducts a blind tasting where entries are assigned a number to assure anonymity. Judges look for high marks in fragrance, aroma, taste, nose, aftertaste and body. Foodies and culinary fans can catch professionals, culinary students, amateurs and kids in action creating unique recipes showcasing Kona coffee as an ingredient in entrees and desserts at the KTA Super Stores Kona Coffee Recipe Contest & Big Island Showcase.
Let's look at some of the highlights of the 2013 Festival.
The Festival opens with its new Kona Coffee Art Show & Competition, presented by Holualoa Foundation for Arts and Culture at the Donkey Mill Art Center on Friday, November 1 from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. The art show features the works of local artists who capture the spirit of Kona's nearly 200-year coffee heritage and culture. The art show runs throughout the 10-days of Kona Coffee Cultural Festival.
Meet Kona coffee farmers and "talk story" while sampling estate brews and specialty food items or peruse boutique art galleries at the Holualoa Village Coffee & Art Stroll in historic Holualoa on November 2, 2013.
On Friday, November 8, the Kona Coffee Cultural Festival awaits the much-anticipated performance by Uwasa No Kyotaro, an upcoming recording artist from Japan. Uwasa No Kyotaro will share the rich diversity of 'Kayo Kyoku" or classics from post war Japan. This outdoor concert will be showcased at the Keauhou Shopping Center starting at 8:00 p.m. at the Keauhou Shopping Center.
Kamehameha Schools Kona Coffee Cultural Festival's Hoolaulea makes its debut on Saturday, November 9, starting at 10:00 a.m. This celebration blends old-time festival favorites together with new family-friendly cultural activities all under one roof. Festival villages will be constructed at the Keauhou Shopping Center including a Kona Coffee Corridor with free samples and Kona coffee for sale direct from the farmers; a Kids World offering games and activities with hours of fun and excitement for any age; the Ethnic Food Market, a very popular stop where Festival goers can eat their way through authentic local food favorites including laulau and fish plate lunches, adobo, huli huil chicken, and all time favorite musubi and shave ice; plus a Christmas craft fair with unique items will help festival-goers get a jump on holiday shopping.
Now let's take a look back at the 2008 Festival. I hope this will give you a good idea of some of the great opportunities for culture, food, fun and even a bit of, dare I say, education.