HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - The 40th Annual Pan-Pacific Festival runs from June 7-9 in Waikiki and this year. For the last 40 years, Pan-Pacific Festival has been a celebration of Hawaii’s diversity and rich culture through the arts, crafts and food. The festival is an opportunity for local performers and community groups to showcase the best of Hawaii and local culture to the community and the rest of the world. The Pan-Pacific Festival also highlights the special relationship Hawaii shares with Japan by giving local and Japanese performers the opportunity to share the same stage. We are also proud to be an official Hawaii Tourism event.
This year, the festival is going to celebrate with some special performances that highlight Hawaii’s rich cultural heritage. This year will feature a special performance from Hālau Nā Mamo O Puʻuanahulu, led by world-renowned nā kumu hula Sonny Ching and Lopaka Igarta-DeVera. The performance, which commemorates the festival’s 40th anniversary, will take place Sunday, June 9, at the Royal Hawaiian Center from noon until 1 p.m. In addition, the annual parade will include an All-Hawaii Bon Dance to celebrate Hawaii’s Japanese-American community at the start of Bon Dance season and also celebrate 40 years in Waikiki.
On Friday, the festival kicks off with a big street party on Kalakaua Avenue with the Hoʻolaulea and Street Dance Festival in Hawaii. The Street Dance Festival will feature a brand new headliner, ST kingz, an award-winning dance group from Japan that was featured on Season 2 of World of Dance. On Saturday night, there will be the Punahele Party, which gives many of the halau from Japan an opportunity to share the stage with some of Hawaiiʻs best musicians and bands. Weldon Kekauoha will perform with halau as they take the stage at Waikiki Beach Walk Plaza Stage. On Sunday, the Pan-Pacific Parade will feature colorful costumes, marching bands, dancing and martial arts demonstrations. The parade kicks off at 5 p.m.
Entertainment stages will stretch from Ala Moana Center to the Kuhio Beach Hula Mound, and each year all of our entertainment stages kick off with taiko drummers. Among the many taiko groups performing is Ryugen Taiko, a nonprofit performance troupe based in Wahiawa. Ryugen Taiko’s mission is to promote and preserve the art of taiko in Hawaii. They hold classes at various elementary schools and perform all over Oahu.