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MidWeek Staff

Traditional Makahiki Festival Saturday At Kahuku Resort

Stepping back in time, Turtle Bay Resort will sponsor a free makahiki festival honoring traditional Hawaiian feats of strength, competition and sport in the season following the fall harvest – when all battles ceased for four months. In this case, it will all be relived in one day.

This second annual Makahiki Kuilima is set for 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday on Kuilima Bay at the Kahuku resort, and the public is welcome. It’s being presented by the education programs of Naepuni Aloha and Ke Kula ‘o S.M. Kamakau and sponsored by Kanalu and the resort, among others.

“We are privileged to host some prestigious events here, but the Makahiki Kuilima is perhaps my favorite because it is so inclusive and authentic,” says Turtle Bay CEO Drew Stotesbury. “It’s thrilling to watch the keiki learn more about the historical significance of the different events, especially seeing them eagerly take a ride down the resort’s holua slide.”

Like the games of centuries ago, the event will feature he’e holua, a special sled competition, and ulu maika and moa pahe’a, a form of ancient bowling. There also will be a hukuhuki, or tug-of-war, competition and o’o ihe, spear throwing.

Hula and Polynesian dance performances also are planned, along with Hawaiian food, lomilomi, health screenings and exhibits of Hawaiian crafting techniques.

“During Makahiki (mid-October to mid-February), war was forbidden, and the Hawaiians spent their time celebrating the harvest, playing games, paying tribute to their chiefs, honoring the god Lono, telling stories, dancing and feasting,” explained resort vice president Danna Holck. “We look forward to starting our new year by sharing the cultural performances and athletics of the day.”

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